“Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts.” — Arnold Bennett
Not really what we want to hear when we don’t think anything’s broken. Leadership is one key to driving innovation “buy in”. It’s critical for us to stay close to the rapid developments happening in the social marketplace.
Take marketing for example. You’re in business selling magical whizzie-whigs and you need to generate visibility and leads in order to sell them. And that’s what you do — brand marketing, content marketing, direct marketing, media buying, public relations, social media marketing — a complete integrated marketing strategy.
Those new leads that are generated are then passed over to sales to follow up on and eventually close. Some of them at least. Those in the lead pipeline may be nurtured and marketed to so as to inch them along to close.
Then what? Those that do close become customers and are handed over to account management and customer service folk and then —
A year later when it’s time to upgrade their magical whizzie-whigs, a percentage say thanks but no thanks. “Just wasn’t the right product/service for us.”
User adoption correlates tightly with customer retention, and yet, marketing gets them to the door and sales closes it, then marketing and sales sit on the porch and have a few beers. You’d think that an integrated marketing strategy include a retention investment, but it’s not.
Same with recruiting talent, regardless if we’re talking contingent, retainer, corporate, RPO — but the argument is that, after the final candidates are presented, even closed, “management” leadership takes over and whatever happens 3, 6, 12 months down the road, ain’t recruiting’s problem. Humans, Leaders, People are fallible and ain’t nothing I can do about that. This is a complex story.
But I’d argue that insightful leaders understand that reducing turnover, increasing team retention and improving overall quality of fit with workplace culture are huge initiatives in an ever-changing and highly competitive social talent economy. That means everybody pre- and post-onboarding on your team plays a role in “user adoption.” The recruiting technology and service industry may worth over $124 billion, but if inefficient talent acquisition and management keep bleeding me out, well, you do the math.
Recruiting IS marketing and sales. Are we on to something here? Marketing and sales should be customer service, but it’s not. Marketing and sales should be partners in retention. The models must change. Leadership must want to change first and the rest will follow. Let’s keep moving forward.
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