I’ve long said that the key to retaining great employees is to make them more marketable. Top performers always want jobs where they can make an impact, learn new skills, and raise their professional profile. What that opportunity is denied, they quit to go find it elsewhere. So if you want to keep great people, just accept the counter-intuitive wisdom of it, and keep making your people more marketable.
But Mike Figliuolo recently took that a step further. He argues that the best way for a manager to build a team full of top people is to not only make people more marketable, but to actively market them. He thinks your best recruitment strategy is to be a “net exporter of talent” and here is his logic:
Take a look at your team. Who are you clinging to when you should be letting them go? Who needs to move on so they can grow somewhere else? How are you helping them do that?
Export some talent. They’ll appreciate it and always be grateful. And once you start exporting, remember there are five people out there waiting to take the spot you just created. You then have a new crop of talent to grow and eventually export.