What do world-class and leading brands like PepsiCo, Microsoft and others have in common? They all value the power of storytelling in business, which we often see through their high-quality marketing efforts. According to the Harvard Business Review, stories have a profound effect on us. They have the power to change our brain chemistry, making us more likely to be empathetic and cooperative. While marketers have long known that stories have the power to change behavior, they can also be a valuable tool in the process of recruiting transformational talent.
In this blog, we’ll explore why storytelling is a critical element of the talent acquisition process and why it is such a powerful recruiting tool when your aim is to attract transformational talent.
Your employment story is the narrative that tells employees what it would be like to step into life at your company. However, it must be properly developed and effectively communicated to have a positive impact. Employment stories, often rooted in an organization’s workplace culture, should support the philosophy and ethos of the company. It gives candidates an immediate sense of who your organization is as an employer, so they can determine if they would be a good fit.
When you tell a story about a position, you need to be able to communicate positive attributes about the company, the position, the company’s mission and values, as well as what the company stands for at a fundamental level. Candidates today are looking for a challenge, including a financial incentive to move and the opportunity to make an impact and grow.
When we communicate or tell the story of a job, we try to focus on what we call the “OST” (one sexy thing) to get the candidate’s attention. This could be the size of the company, the organization’s status in the market, a unique attribute, or what type of game-changing opportunity this role will have in the future of the business. If your company is the only one of its kind that does something specific, be sure to include that in your story.
As a company, it’s important to provide a challenge within your employment story. Within that, the hiring leader must also represent the company and the role appropriately. It must be understood that, at senior levels, these are not transactional placements. Senior level candidates are highly skilled and intelligent, and many will have countless opportunities on the table to choose from. Because of the highly competitive nature of recruiting top talent, the more you can inform candidates and get them excited through your story, the bigger edge you’re going to have.
Very often, having the input of a third-party executive search firm will allow you to tell your extended employment story in a way that accurately captures the essence of your organization. This also provides great PR for your organization in the market, and may help inform candidates about your company’s past, or specific attributes they weren’t unaware of. All of this is opposed to simply posting a job description and hoping a great candidate comes your way. This type of post-and-pray mentality will not assist you in gaining an edge in the marketplace.
Transformational talent acquisition is not a transactional field. In many ways, it’s a creative field, which is why companies truly must rethink how they can stand out to attract top talent. This landscape puts increased pressure on organizations all vying for the same talent. Cutting through the noise and standing out, at this point, is mainly being accomplished through creative and meticulous storytelling. As alluded to earlier, storytelling is one of the best ways you can help candidates gain a more intimate view of working in your organization.
If you need assistance defining what your organization stands for, or telling your employment story, MJS Executive Search can help. Over the past decade, we’ve had the honor and pleasure to work with innovative and industry leading companies. We take the necessary time and thought to understand the story our clients want to tell. Telling the right story to attract transformational talent doesn’t have to be difficult, but it does take time and expertise to be successful. If you’re looking for a way to tell the right story, please contact MJS Executive Search today to learn more about how we can help.