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If you’ve spoken with me in the past three months, there’s a good chance I’ve brought up the book Reach Out by Molly Beck.
One of the key takeaways from the book, that I’m currently trying to build a habit around, is to reach out to one person each workday and congratulate or thank them for something. If you have a small ask, you can add that in, but the goal is to start to build a network. This approach to building a network, for an introvert like me who cringes at the thought of schmoozey networking, is a great strategy to build authentic relationships that can be mutually beneficial over time. I like this idea much better.
When it comes to talent acquisition, I’m a big proponent of having a hiring plan (don’t worry, having a plan doesn’t mean you can’t change it) and actively sourcing candidates for roles I expect to fill 6-12 months down the road. This means I have time. I can chip away at finding excellent people over weeks and months. More importantly, I don’t have to rush the conversation and start convincing someone to consider joining my team before I know anything about them beyond their CV.
People value different things in life, and those things change over time. If I can get to know someone and what’s important to them, I’ll know if I can provide those things at my company. Then I can figure out what important things their current job or company isn’t providing them–then I have a hook.
Leveraging the hook, and closer to when it’s time to fill the role, I can start talking about why they should join my team. How great the company is, how it jives with their personality, and (shockingly) how we can deliver on all of the most important things to them–especially those things that their current company isn’t delivering on.
How does the book Reach Out tie into this strategy for talent acquisition? If you can build your network this way, you can certainly build a robust pipeline of excellent talent that you warm up to slowly and genuinely this way. And, undoubtedly, there will be organic crossover between those cohorts–and the wins start piling up!
Have ideas on building a network and/or acquiring great talent? I’d love to read about them in the comments!