In The News: 10 Things I Know About … Post-2020 employee recruitment & retention

Vision Advertising COO Julia Becker Collins (right) sitting with Communications Manager Catrina Gardner (left).

This article originally appeared in the Worcester Business Journal on September 18, 2023.

Competing for top talent in this post-2020 world with the Great Resignation and quiet quitting is challenging, especially for small businesses like mine. Yet, our 10-person agency had a 100% retention rate the first two COVID years, and we’ve hired two full-timers in the last year. (For one position, I had 400+ applicants.) How has Vision kept our people happy and recruited new teammates?

10) Money isn’t everything.

I’ve had candidates take a pay cut to work here. Though their former jobs were paying more, it was making them miserable.

9) Time off is essential.

You can always get money back, but you can never get time back. The days of offering only two weeks vacation are over.

8) So is flexibility.

Expecting someone to be glued to their desk eight hours per day, five days per week is unrealistic. Dentist appointments and school pick-ups can and will happen during working hours.

7) No one likes traffic,

high gas prices, unreliable public transit, or commuting in snow. Remote work affords employees a better quality of life. Plus, top talent can be found anywhere. What if physical distance is the only thing separating you from the perfect candidate?

6) Finding the right fit is a high priority for job seekers.

A big ideas self-starter doesn’t want to spend 40 hours per week reporting to a because-that’s-how-we’ve-always-done-it micromanager.

5) People don’t leave bad jobs; they leave bad bosses.

The job of a leader is to support their staff. Be reliable, available, understanding.

4) Transparency builds trust.

Candidates don’t want you to waste their time. Employees don’t want to be left in the dark.

3) Proactivity = key for retention.

If an employee gives their notice and the supervisor is shocked, there’s a disconnect. Had this supervisor not neglected to be present, check in regularly, and ask for input, they could’ve seen this coming.

2) Stagnancy hinders.

Employees want to know their job has room for growth: learning new skills, taking on responsibilities, or otherwise advancing their career.

1) Happy employees are good for business.

Your people are your business’ greatest asset. Happy employees = happy clients.

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About the author : Julia Becker Collins

Julia Becker Collins is the Chief Operating Officer here at Vision Advertising. If Vision Advertising was a wheel, Julia would be the hub on which everything turns. She leads all aspects of the company, from developing and implementing the marketing plans of clients to managing the operations of all of Vision’s staff. Under her leadership, this marketing agency continues to grow, bringing on new staff and clients. Julia runs Vision Advertising and is the primary point of contact for everything from new clients to her growing staff. When she’s not leading Vision Advertising’s marketing operations team, she can be found taking a bootcamp, yoga, or spin class, running in an obstacle race, trail running, hiking, doing just about anything outside and active, listening to one of the many podcasts in her queue, or spending time with family.

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