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The following is from by Cheryl Koch's presentation at IBA West's Blue Ribbon Confernece earlier this month. Cheryl is President and CEO of Agency Management Resource Group and serves as Managing Director of IBA West Education/Insurance Skills Center. This is the second in a series featuring the eight key elements.
Element No. 2—Always Wear Your Recruiting Hat
There’s no doubt about it—the agency with the best people wins. We often hear that familiar refrain: “We just can’t find good people”. Although hiring the next generation of agency employees is not without its challenges, it is not because of a lack of bright, talented people and identifying and assimilating them into our agencies is one of the most important business issues of our time. Our workforce is “graying” with the average age of agency owners over 50. Although not a lot of data exists, we believe the average age of the agency’s employees is very close to that age as well.
So, where can we find this new generation of employee? It’s likely not going to happen by “raiding” your competitors. Think about it—no agency is going to let its best people walk out the door. We simply have to find a way to attract new talent into our industry by sharing with them the exciting and rewarding careers they can have in the agency. What we do matters, and everyone wants to be part of an organization that contributes to its community in a positive way. The best agencies are adding new people to their agencies by:
The Millenials—those born between 1980 and 2000, will have a very different view of work, and we must adapt to them. They will have portfolio careers, working in an industry for three to five years then seeking an opportunity in an entirely different industry. This will put enormous pressure on us to train them and get them productive in a very short period of time, which brings us to the next key element. (Look for Element 3 in the next edition of the Insider.)