Have you ever heard a business owner say this, “There are no good people out there to hire anymore. No one has good work ethic these days”? I have… countless times. I can’t relate though. Maybe I’m lucky to have always been around motivated individuals. I doubt luck has anything to do with it though. There’s a science to attracting talent. It goes deeper than being at the right place at the right time. Some of you can attract talent because of your natural charisma. Well that’s the “easy” part. Retaining the talent is what takes time to learn. In Part 1, I will focus on meeting and attracting talented people. Every healthy business starts with dedicated talented people.
This is quite simple. Go where the great minds are. I was fortunate to have gone to three great institutions of higher education – Strake Jesuit College Prep (yep, I’m counting my “high school”), Morehouse, and Georgia Tech. Between these three institutions, my network is out of this world. I’m one phone call away from doctors, investment banking execs, professors, politicians, scientists, engineers, musicians, entrepreneurs, designers, and my wife lol (Spelman). The bottom line is that you have to be where the action is. You can hangout with the best of the best online by taking part in Twitter hashtag discussions with other influencers. A good example of this is Mack Collier’s #BlogChat. Listservs, online community forums, and popular blog comment sections are other great places to meet other talented people.
It’s no coincidence that most of the examples in the previous section relate to education. As long as you continue to actively learn and seek useful information, you will find other people who are interested in doing great things. Never think you know everything and always kick it with people who are smarter than you. Trust me. This works. If you’re a leader and your teammates are smarter than you, that’s GREAT! Good for you for being able to find great talent and convincing them to join you in success.
Being in the presence of great people is cool and all; but if you don’t come out of your shell and actually meet people, you’re not really connecting. Being a seasoned mover-and-shaker takes time and it’s not always necessary. The key is to not let being passive, too laid back, or shy deter you from meeting someone that could positively impact your career or venture. While networking, be conscious of your body language and posture. Having an inviting disposition will go a long way. While speaking to people, look directly at them. Strong eye contact and firm hand shakes are still valued. And by all means, don’t be fake. Most savvy people can sense a fake.
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Live like the people you want to attract.
This is easier said than done. Read biographies of people you admire. If the biography is any good, you will learn that these people aren’t perfect. The more you read and research, you will notice that successful people have some common traits. One of them is uncanny focus and work ethic. I’m reading Steve Job’s biography right now. The guy was a beast in the business world. He always had strong and talented people around him (you had to be strong to hang with Jobs). If you work diligently to heighten specific attributes that are related to success, you will find yourself rubbing elbows with people who want to do great things. Be open about your story and your path to greatness. That’s what I’m dong right now by consistently blogging. Talented people read about other talented people. Before you know it, you’ll receive emails and LinkedIn connection requests from people who are worthy to join forces with you. Lastly, consider approaching someone you admire to be your mentor. Here’s the trick, approach them with something you can offer them.
With all this said, don’t get fooled by a charismatic person who puts up fronts. Get to know these people. You have to make sure everyone on your team is genuine. Next time, I’ll touch on retaining talent with a strong focus on knowing your team members inside and out.
Originally posted at ChrisLovesYou.com