- November 1, 2017: Vol. 4, Number 11

The Young and the Restless: Nine tips for attracting and retaining young talent

by Laura Pierson

Most advisers look to hire when they are feeling overwhelmed by a stress-filled workload. In reality, however, the best time to add team members lies in the sweet spot between “I’m just about at capacity” and “I want to grow.”

Does this describe where you are right now? If so, you should begin thinking about your firm’s most pressing personnel needs. Several positions we’ve seen trending in the past year have involved young, bright professionals taking the lead on technology, paraplanning, client education and marketing. Check out this list of tips for onboarding the next generation.

Double check your systems: Before you go through the process of looking for someone to assume daily responsibilities, ensure you have reviewed your standardized systems, completed appropriate updates and collected documents in one place for easy reference. The goal is to streamline training time while still giving a new stakeholder all the tools they need to be productive.

Write a clear job description: Tailor your traditional postings when seeking younger talent. While it is important to highlight necessary qualifications and job duties, you should also emphasize how vital this role will be to the growth of your business. Additionally, consider mentioning culture, values and community involvement in your ad. If you want to attract young professionals, you must speak their language and connect accordingly.

Know where to post: Tech natives will almost exclusively look online to find potential openings. So, go where they are. Share available positions on apps, through your social media accounts and on websites such as Indeed and LinkedIn. When possible, enable people to search for and submit applications via smart phone or tablet.

Seek interns who adopt a long-term mentality: Carson Group has had significant success with our intern-to-hire program. Utilizing our ties with local universities, we’ve been able to onboard soon-to-be-graduates who regularly transition to full-time stakeholders upon degree completion. Still not convinced? Think of an internship as an extended interview.

Use hiring tools to filter ideal candidates: Clarity can be difficult if torn between a few solid applicants. Tests such as DISC, Topgrading, Wonderlic and Gallup’s StrengthsFinder not only provide you with some information about the personalities and abilities of your candidates, they also offer insight into how well they may acclimate to your current culture, particularly when considering generational variances.

Uncover motivations: Millennials born between 1982 and 2000 have differing priorities than baby boomers or Gen Xers. Their motivators are not limited to compensation and employee benefits, as they also rank pride in their work, flexible schedules, trust in leaders and professional development as top concerns.

Create a one-week game plan: Accepting a new position is intimidating for anyone. Relieve some of this stress by coordinating a warm welcome and preparing an hour-by-hour training schedule for at least the first week. If ambitious, outline a plan for their first month, slowly increasing assignments and reducing supervised time. Research proves that if your new hire has a positive, engaging experience in the first few weeks, you drastically decrease chances of burnout and turnover.

Set expectations and establish personal growth goals: The quickest way to turn a hire into a superstar is much easier than you think. Simply spell out your expectations early, give realistic milestones/timelines and check in frequently. This strategy will be particularly beneficial to those just entering the workforce who are eager to impress but lack the experience to intuitively identify your objectives.

Future-proof your business: Studies suggest it costs six to nine months of a stakeholder’s salary to hire and train a replacement. As if the headache of turnover wasn’t enough, the dollars behind it are downright scary. Give your team members a reason to stay by providing a progressive career path, rather than a stagnant, unchallenging existence within your firm. The seed that knows, grows.


Laura Pierson is the managing partner of Carson Group Coaching.

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