Top five ways to recruit and retain a high performing team

Submitted by 92e808af-7b54-… on Tue, 11/14/2023 - 17:54
{"version":"0.3.0","atoms":[],"cards":[],"markups":[["b"],["a",["href","https:\/\/\/resources\/8066-aia-compensation--benefits-report-2023","target","_blank"]],["s"]],"sections":[[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"In 2019,\nJennifer Keegan, AAIA, director,\nBuilding \u0026 Roofing Science at GAF, knew she needed to grow her then two-person\nteam to better serve clients and increase her company\u2019s presence within the\nindustry. Before she could place the job listings, she needed to\nget the buy-in internally, but also create a\nsense of interest externally as she searched throughout\nthe industry to fill key roles.\n Now a team of nine, the\nengineers and architects\nKeegan assembled from across the U.S. is thriving for GAF and\nis\nan example\nof what happens when hiring and managing is done with intention and\npersonalization. Keegan and her colleague Andrea Wagner Watts, Building\nScience Education manager,\nshare their best practices for attracting - and keeping \u2013 top AEC\nindustry talent. "]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[],0,"1. \n"],[0,[0],1,"Use social media to build a buzz "],[0,[],0," "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Crowd sourcing her network on what they valued\nand how GAF could be a better partner, Keegan used social media to\nmake the case for expanding her team. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cI started\nusing LinkedIn to say, \u2018What do you\nthink?\nGive\nme your feedback.\u2019 [With LinkedIn comments] I\ncould show internally that there was a thirst for this type of team, that there\nwould be value in hiring,\u201d said\nKeegan. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Social media is especially\nimportant as more employers search\nnationwide\nfor new hires. Although\nthere were fewer remote workers in 2022 than in 2020, according to the "],[0,[1],1,"2023 AIA\nCompensation \u0026 Benefits Report,"],[0,[],0," the number of remote workers remained\nhigher than pre-pandemic levels, with 57% of firms reporting hybrid\nopportunities and 27% fully remote. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"It was Keegan\u2019s\nsocial media buzz that initially caught Wagner\nWatts\u2019s\nattention before she joined the team. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cFor me, it\u0027s exciting to be a part of the change\nversus watching somebody else be able to do it,\u201d she said.\n\u201cThere\nwas an energy in the GAF\nspace,\nand\nit captured\nwhat\nthis team was trying to do. It was\nnoticeable that the people already involved were excited about it,\nand they really were driven to do something different.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"As Keegan"],[0,[2],1,","],[0,[],0,"\nmade\nhires,\nshe\nannounced\neach\nnew member and continues to document the\nteam\u2019s success to celebrate her colleagues and\nspotlight\nwins\nthat highlight\nhow \u201cour competitors don\u0027t have a team quite like this.\u201d "]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[],0,"2. \n"],[0,[0],1,"Leverage your networks"],[0,[],0," "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Watts was a former GAF competitor. Other team\nmembers were former colleagues\nand clients who considered\nthe opportunity and took time to\nrecommend potential hires simply because Keegan asked. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cIt\u2019s not what\nyou know, it\u2019s who you\nknow,\u201d\nsuggests Keegan, who mines\nher personal and professional networks for both\ncandidates and advice. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cYou can\u2019t\nbe afraid to ask for help. You should be\nasking, \u2018Who should I connect with to make\nthis effort a success? What are\nmy blind\nspots?\nWill you help promote this opportunity for me?\u2019\u201d\nsaid Keegan.\n\u201cIf\nyou don\u2019t ask, the answer is always no.\u201d "]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[],0,"3. \n"],[0,[0],1,"Match energies"],[0,[],0," "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Keegan was not trying to assemble a roster of individual\ncontributors.\nShe\nneeded a band of high\nperformers with a collaborative\nspirit. As she interviewed candidate after\ncandidate, she recognized\nthe value in mixing skill sets and experiences among the team but\nput\na special emphasis on personality, in some\ncases, even more than technical knowledge and skill. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cA red flag for\nme\nis if\nyou cannot\nshow up to the interview with\nenergy.\nHow\nare you going to show up for our clients with energy?\nHow\nare you going to show up on a stage at a conference with energy?\u201d\nsaid Keegan. \u201cEven if I\u0027m\nsure that the technical is there, if it\u2019s\nnot\nthe right fit for what you\u2019re trying to\naccomplish, don\u2019t invest the time.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"The effort to\nmatch energies is serving the GAF team well. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cWe have all\nthese different backgrounds and all these different ways of looking at things,\nand we\u0027re all looking through a different lens,\u201d said Keegan,\n\u201cbut\nwe\u0027re\nall working towards the same goal.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"To cement their streamlined approach to work,\nthey recently printed team business cards so they can\nbetter serve clients by offering the full scope of the team\u2019s knowledge.\nWatts\nsays this tactic only works because the team has\nbuilt a\nstrong sense of trust. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cOh, you need your\nlocal person? Here is\na way to get all of us,\u201d said Wagner\nWatts.\n\u201cI\nthink that says it all.\u201d "]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[],0,"4. \n"],[0,[0],1," Be intentional about office culture"],[0,[],0," "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Casual dress policies, child- and pet friendly\noffices, and flexible work hours are among the perks\nmost valued within the industry,\naccording to the 2023 AIA Compensation \u0026 Benefits report. Employers must\noffer equally competitive quality-of-life benefits and transparent career path\nopportunities. That starts, says Keegan and Wagner Watts,\nwith building an inclusive, supportive culture. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cWe spend\ntoo much time at work to not enjoy it, to not love the people we work with, to\nnot have something to look forward to and some joy in the day,\u201d\nsaid Keegan. \u201cIf it just becomes a slog, then why\nam I doing this?\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Team meetings are open forums\nfor the GAF Building and Roofing Science team,\nwhich had\nthe unique experience of having most of\nthe team join the company within the same time.\nThey have found success in setting strategy together,\nwhich was a new and welcomed approach\nfor Wagner Watts. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cIt was, \u2018How\ndo we want to build it?\nWhat do we want to accomplish,\u2019\u201d\nshe said. \u201cIt was\nactively engaging everyone\u0027s input, and everyone\nhad a say.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"The process helps ensure\npeople are taking the work they are best at and most eager to do\nand\npositions\nthe team to blend their skills sets to support one another. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cAs Steve Jobs\nwould say, \u2018you don\u0027t hire smart\npeople and tell them what to do\u2019,\u201d added Keegan.\n\u201cWe\u0027re\nhere to work together, not compete\nagainst one another.\u201d "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"5. \n"],[0,[0],1," Celebrate and value individuals and teams"],[0,[],0," "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Once a dream team has been assembled, how can you\nensure they will stay? "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"\u201cIf there isn\u0027t an energy and a desire and a\ncommon purpose for what you\u0027re trying to do, you\u0027re not going to retain the\ntalent, no matter how much money you throw at them,\u201d said Wagner Watts. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Compensation\ngains did not keep pace with the rising cost of living over the last two years\nfor most\narchitect positions, making the\nbalance of recruiting top performers while maintaining\nan evolving, employee-centric workplace a challenge.\nKeegan\nsays beyond raises and bonuses, managers can\nbring value to the experience by helping\ntheir teams expand their internal and external networks\nand increase\ntheir presence\nwithin\nthe industry. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0," \n\u201cIt\u0027s\ntelling the story right,\u201d said Keegan. \u201cIn giving\nthem a platform, we are\nmaking\nsure\nother\npeople have visibility to the amazing work they\u0027re doing.\u201d "]]]]}
Industry leaders share their formula for attracting – and keeping – top talent in the AEC industry.
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Andrea Wagner Watts and Jennifer Keegan, AIA
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architecture firms, hiring, employees, employer, LinkedIn, talent
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