Culture Makes the Difference in a Competitive Job Market

Last week, attended an annual economic summit for the North San Diego County region. I’m not an economics guru so I’m always amazed by the amount of data that can be presented in a short period of time. One of the discussions revolved around the unemployment rate of our region. We are fortunate that our rate is several points lower than the national average. Good job San Diego!

One of the interesting points the presenter made was in order to attract the talent from this competitive job market, we will have to pay more to hire the best people. I was waiting for him to follow up on that statement and talk about the non-monetary items a company could offer to attract the talent, but nothing was mentioned and we moved on to the next graph.

Let’s focus on the non-monetary culture that can set your company apart in the competition for the best talent in the market place today. I am a believer in servant leadership. I can tell you that we’ve been able to hire some of the best talent in San Diego and it isn’t because of our salary. We believe we need to meet the overall needs of those who work for us. Compensation is one aspect of that, but your company culture can be one of the most attractive assets you have to potential employees.

Let me share our experience in how culture has helped us obtain and retain talented people. Consider the following:

  1. People today want purpose in their lives. They want to know what they do makes a difference in the world around them. They’re looking for companies that have a great vision, purpose and know why they do what they do.
  2. People want a seat at the table where they’ll be given an opportunity to contribute to the organization’s success, not just for profits but for making a difference in the world around them.
  3. People want organizations that have values, with leaders that actually live those values.
  4. People want to be treated with dignity and respect, not just for what they bring to the company in work value but for who they are as individuals.
  5. People want work-life integration, with a focus on putting the family first, not the company.

I believe that companies who have a great purpose in life, values supported by leaders who live those values through their behaviors, and a positive work life attitude will not have any problem attracting great talent in a competitive hiring environment like we have in San Diego.

Attracting great talent through your culture and retaining that talent with dignity and respect will provide a great engaged group of individuals who will produce amazing results. Don’t just focus on money; focus on the individual and meeting their needs. This is the best position a company can be in a low unemployment rate environment. You will attract the best employees with your culture.


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