10 Ways to Attract Top Talent by Improving Your Workplace Culture
Getting top talent into your workforce holds countless benefits for your company. From an increase in innovation to better overall workplace engagement, the best employees in your industry will bring out the best in everyone around them. So, wouldn’t it be nice if the best employees were working for you? Convincing top talent that working for your organization is in their best interest takes more than just a sleek benefits package. While a meaningful job that pays well is something every high-level candidate is looking for, the recipe for hiring and retaining the best talent in your field also includes the context where work happens. A workplace’s culture can greatly influence potential employees, and if you want to attract and hold on to the best of the best, it’s time to consider improving your workplace culture.
Top recruits don’t want to work within a rigid system that takes itself too seriously. They don’t need a heavy hand or watchful eye. The best talent in your field enjoys their work, and they enjoy working hard at it. Because they already take it seriously, they’re looking for a workplace culture that’s light-hearted enough to embrace sincere effort and tolerate occasional failure.
When a business provides transparency to its employees regarding decision-making and challenges, it promotes a culture where everyone is treated like an adult who has something to contribute. Top recruits want to feel like they are valuable — not just for the work they can do but for their insight. Having a transparent workplace culture will engender feelings of worth and value among all your employees, and potential recruits will pick up on it.
The days of succeeding and failing alone are over. If you don’t have a work environment that encourages and fosters collaboration between co-workers and departments, it’s time to make some changes.
When a business provides transparency to its employees regarding decision-making and challenges, it promotes a culture where everyone is treated like an adult who has something to contribute.
While not everyone can spend their workday designing roller coasters, everyone can enjoy their workday when the culture supports fun. From having a ping-pong table in the break room to taking weekly or monthly outings as a company or department, a work culture that includes plenty of good times is much more appealing than one that doesn’t.
5. Employee Focused
A workplace culture that believes its employees are all replaceable or that values shareholders above the people on the ground doing the work is not a culture that will woo top talent. A company that cares about its employees by focusing on what will make their workdays and lives better (benefits packages, bonuses, flex time, paid maternity and paternity leave, etc.), however, will. Make sure you emphasize your employee efforts when you recruit new employees.
6. Customer Focused
Top talent cares about the customer. To that end, if your business’s culture doesn’t fully strive to please your customers in every way, you’ll find that your best employees will seek out greener pastures where clients and customers get what they want.
7. Valuing Emotional Intelligence
It isn’t just intellectual ability, skill set, degrees earned and work experience that make someone a good employee. Emotional intelligence — the ability to identify, control and express emotions — is a must, too. High emotional intelligence tends to be a greater predictor of work, life and relational success than IQ, so businesses that make a practice of hiring people with high levels of emotional intelligence tend to be places that are kinder and more enjoyable to work — exactly the kind of culture that attracts top talent.
High emotional intelligence tends to be a greater predictor of work, life and relational success
8. An Emphasis on Innovation
Creativity and innovation are a big deal to today’s top recruits. Idea-driven work is more interesting and stimulating than routine work, and if your workplace doesn’t actively employ a culture of innovation, the chances are good that you’ll be passed over by excellent talent.
9. A Big Vision
Is your vision bigger and better than just making a lot of money? Is your company trying to contribute meaningfully to your field and the world around you? Meaningful work is very important to top talent, and if your workplace culture doesn’t support an expansive vision, it’s going to be hard to attract workers who want that.
10. Values Driven
Being a values-driven company is definitely a good way to appeal to the best recruits, but are your values easily seen and experienced in the work environment? Simply paying lip service to your ideals isn’t enough. If you value open communication, make sure your door is rarely closed. If you value community involvement, always use local restaurants to cater lunch meetings and parties. Top talent wants to work in a values-driven environment where the environment clearly conveys the values. Competition for the best talent can get fierce, and having a leg up on what your competitors can offer is essential. Improve your workplace culture, and you’ll stand a much better chance of landing and retaining better employees.
Mary Martinez is a respected HR professional and has been working in the industry for 20 years. She enjoys coaching business professionals and helping them make sure their employees get the most out of their professional relationship. In addition to blogging about careers, work life and human resources issues, she regularly presents workshops and seminars on career success and management.
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