In order to attract and retain my grandfather’s generation, a firm had to provide security of tenure. Since every firm offered security of tenure, it didn’t really matter. And since there wasn’t really a war for talent, it mattered even less.
In order to attract and retain my father’s generation, a firm had to provide quality benefits. The provision of quality benefits required scale. There was therefore a migration of talent towards firms that operated at scale. Since the war for talent was largely between a small number of scale firms, it didn’t really matter. [Except for the firms that bid up the talent using the benefits…. they’re paying some hefty prices now for the provision of those benefits. Witness Detroit.]
In order to attract and retain my generation, a firm had to provide challenging work. The war for talent had now begun, and those that were far-sighted enough to offer the right challenges attracted the right people.
In order to attract and retain the current generation, a firm had to provide equity. The war for talent was now intensifying, and talent moved to the place with the best growth prospects. But there was some harsh learning to come. People had to learn that options didn’t know how to swim.
In order to attract Generation M, a firm has to provide …. what? Values and beliefs that are congruent with the talent pool.
Security of tenure. Food, clothing and shelter. Challenging work. Ability to make pots of money. Values and beliefs. Hmmmm. Never thought that I could use Maslow to depict the motivation for people joining a company.