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Doing the Talent Acquistion Limbo

limbo-dancing.jpgIn a new article from our board member, Steven Hunt, he talks about the challenges of keeping your selection standards high when the labor market is tight.   He discusses the downside of lowering the bar to increase your applicant pools – increased turnover, decreased morale, lower productivity – and suggests a number of strategies to avoid the adverse consequences of lowering the bar for incoming talent.

While many organizations are competing for talent, one desirable population, the Millenials, may be underlooked.  In a recent BusinessWeek article about the importance of the youth vote this election year, our board member Jared Bernstein is cited as saying Millenials “start lower and grow slower” than their parents did when it comes to employment opportunities in the US as many former middle class jobs have shifted offshore.  Proactive organizations are reviving their college recruiting efforts and making investments in growing their talent from within.  Although their recruitment strategies may be cutting edge (Facebook, MySpace) the employment brand value proposition may still be old school.   It’s made clear in the BusinessWeek article that Millenials share many of the same priorities with their parents when it comes to employment – with health benefits topping the list.

What is your organization doing to recruit and develop talent from the Millenial generation?

What could you do with $150 billion?

ant-and-grasshopper.jpgOur board member, Jared Bernstein, speculated in a recent blog here on the options for the US government to intervene to stave off recession.   Even as we speak, George Bush is urging Congress to pass a $150 billion economic stimulus package that would, among other things, generate tax rebates for an estimated 117 million US consumers. 

The question this begs is whether the average consumer will go out and spend that money to its intended effect; i.e. to pump those dollars back into the economy via the purchase of goods and services.  In this related blog at the Wall Street Journal, consumers are indicating that they’re cutting back on discretionary spending in order to be better prepared for potential workforce cutbacks. 

What’s your plan?  Remember the fable of the ant and the grasshopper?  Do you blow your rebate on a big screen TV or tuck it away in a CD?

Punching in at the Ritz Carlton

touchid.jpgIn a new article we’ve published,  Are Hourly Workers Professionals?David Creelman explores the qualities that differentiate professionals who happen to be paid by the hour from those who are merely punching the clock to earn a living.  In his article, he talks about duration in the job, content that requires expertise, and a feeling of pride in the job as the key attributes of an hourly professional worker. 

“OK”, you say, “I get how that might work for nurses, technicians and other skilled professions.  But how about store clerks, janitors, and other relatively lower skilled jobs?”  David cites examples from just these kinds of jobs in his article.   While several of his examples are drawn from outside of the United States, we can see recent examples here where companies have ignored the professionalism of their front line staff to their financial detriment.  Circuit City and Best Buy have been in the news lately, with the latter’s superior results frequently linked to its investments in its employees and customer service.

Check out the article and let us know of your experiences with front line professionals who’ve won your business and your loyalty.