Talent Magnet: How to Attract and Keep the Best People by Mark Miller. Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc. 155 pages. 2018
In his latest book, given the growing need organizations have for talented people to sustain a competitive advantage, Mark Miller looks at what is really required to attract “Top Talent”. He tells us that what attracts and keeps Top Talent is different from what attracts and keeps typical talent.
I have read and benefitted from many of the author’s books. As is his custom, he teaches through an entertaining fable, much like those of Patrick Lencioni and Ken Blanchard. We meet Blake, the CEO of a successful high-performance organization. However, he has just been told by Human Resources that they will not be able to staff the company’s near-term plans, instead suggesting that Blake reduce the organization’s growth goals. You too may be dealing with this “war for talent”. This is not just a problem for Blake’s organization, as he realizes when he engages in a peer mentoring group of eight CEOs from a diverse set of businesses. Many, if not all, organizations are dealing with how to attract and keep talented people.
At the same time, for personal reasons, Blake’s son Clint desires to raise funds to buy a well in an emerging country. Clint and his friends decide to get summer jobs to raise the $8,000 to dig the well.
Blake wants his organization to become a Talent Magnet, a place so attractive, that Top Talent will be standing in line to work there. Blake and his team visit several organizations that have solid reputations for outstanding people to see if they can identify the primary motivations for Top Talent. Is Top Talent attracted by different factors than typical talent?
As this is occurring, Clint and his friends check out businesses that they are considering to work at that summer. As they do, they realize that they want something more in those organizations, and they slowly begin building a list of criteria.
Blake and his team then begin working to clarify the components of a Talent Magnet and the key leadership behaviors/best practices needed. Is it possible that he can learn how he can create a Talent Magnet from his son Clint?
Mark Miller has done it again in this entertaining fable built on new research. Highly recommended.