3 innovative strategies for engaging (and keeping) talent
Like many in the rapidly evolving financial service industry, my
firm has faced a key challenge in the past few years: keeping
talent. Why? Not only is there growing competition for talent in
human economy", but young professionals are increasingly
driven to establish themselves as specialists in their field.
Over the past few years we've learned that keeping our
professionals engaged means providing them with the opportunity to
explore and achieve their full potential (bonus: we also then
increase the value we provide to clients). Sounds obvious, right?
But to actually achieve this, you have to establish a culture that
supports consistent, innovative disruption.
Here are three key management strategies that have helped us
turn this challenge into a growth opportunity:
My responsibility as a leader is not to unilaterally choose a
new direction for my team. It's to encourage a steady stream of
two-way communication between staff at every level, in order to
achieve consensus. Some people view collaborative leadership as
"too nice," but actually it is strategic.
Business management legend and former CEO of General Electric,
Jack Welch explains, "We know where most
of the creativity, the innovation, the stuff that drives
productivity lies - in the minds of those closest to the
My team is closest to the nitty-gritty, every day work. I need
those insights. It's not easy to create an office culture where
anyone will speak up, unafraid and unaffected by hierarchy. But if
you can achieve it, you'll tap into a well of potentially
Not so top-down
Collaboration is more than just sharing information. The
insights from my team not only inspire decision-making, they
establish trust. Our professionals trust that their involvement is
integral to the growth of our business, and I can draw on their
unique skill sets and expertise to develop creative business
We took the insights and ideas that emerged from increased team
collaboration at our firm and expanded the services we offer. As a
challenger brand (we're mid-market financial service experts,
always seeking to push the envelope), diversifying our business
offerings both attracts clientele looking for specialty services
and entrepreneurially minded talent who seek professional
Now, our clients can turn to us for an expanded suite of
services that meet not only their traditional accounting needs, but
specialty audit, tax and advisory demands as well.
Diversification creates an added layer of value – a
"sticky" factor – making us indispensible to our
clients as well as incentivizing our professionals to expand their
Disruption is inevitable. No matter what your industry, it will
change, as will your client's demands. So embrace it.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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The Canadian Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions ("OSFI") recently ruled that a bank cannot promote comprehensive credit insurance ("CCI") within its Canadian branches under the Insurance Business (Banks and Bank Holdings Companies) Regulations (the "Regulations").
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