How to Attract and Keep Top Talent in 2017


Experts have long predicted the war for talent

As recruiters, this is our arena. We see clients increasingly having to compete for top talent and candidates who are more interested in career development and advancement than another zero at the end of their pay cheque.

But here’s the catch: the skills that will define the next generation of business leaders are not of a technical nature. 

Recent research from thought leaders at Deloitte and UNDP revealed the most difficult positions to recruit for in PNG:

? Executives

? General Managers 

? HR Managers

 ?The fact that managers require not just industry specific skills, but also general skills which often are best learned through many years? experience, makes it even more difficult.? ? From the Deloitte & UNDP report

These general skills, like leadership or effectiveness in a team, are learned over time and can be encouraged by training. 

Are future managers, directors and CEOs likely to be technically excellent? We hope so. But what will truly set them apart will be their ability to understand, positively influence and develop the teams around them. 

These are the kind of professionals organisations are struggling to attract and retain. 

If employees can see that their value in an organisation is worth more than a number, they have an incentive to stay and build upon the foundations laid out for them. This is why the companies who invest in the training and development of their leaders will be the ones who win the war for talent.

The unavoidable fact is that training can be a sizeable outlay, and one that needs to be incorporated into a long-term strategy for it to be effective. When done correctly, it can stimulate new thinking and ideas, strengthen workforces and open doors to new business opportunities. 

But not all training is creating equal. 

There is a difference between programs that are short-lived and those that are high-impact and drive a lasting transformation.  

So, what are the cornerstones of effective training?


Trying to fit a square peg into a round hole isn’t going to achieve anything. 

For a program to leave its mark on a workforce long after the trainers have packed up and left, it is crucial that the tools, frameworks and action plans are actually applicable back at the office. Every workplace and team operates differently, and training programs need to reflect this.

Collaboration with the right stakeholders

It may seem obvious, but consider this: one of the top criticisms of training programs is that everyone cooperates like a well-oiled machine at training, but revert to their old behaviour as soon as they return to work. 

This happens when participants cannot draw a parallel between what they have learned and real situations in the workplace. To combat this, the right stakeholders need to be involved in the creation of internal training or the customisation of external training. 

For programs to be relevant, they need to incorporate actual organisational values, address real challenges facing the team and teach internal stakeholders how to own and drive initiatives back at work.  

Long term investment

Before investing in training, organisations need to know what outcomes they want to achieve and who will be responsible for driving the change. 

At the end of the day, if organisations are trying to create a culture of success and attract talent, there needs to be a clear starting point and plan on how to roll out training over time. An insincere ad-hoc approach comes across as just that ? insincere. 

Change won’t happen overnight, but when organisations get serious about investing in training, word gets around. By creating an environment where employees understand that they can learn, grow and develop their careers, organisations send the right message.

As the competition for top talent heats up, remaining flat-footed isn’t an option anymore. 

If you are open to an honest discussion about how training could benefit you or your organisation, please don’t hesitate to contact me via 

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