End of Year Musings…

3 min read

As we close the year out here at Management Recruiters of Fairfax, Inc., I can now reflect on this past year. I look at it from both a candidate and a client perspective.

Observation #1: Regarding clients, I am seeing a sea change on how they are securing and retaining their talent. There is sort of a Tale of Two Cities emerging. Winners and Losers. Those that provide remote-at home-work options are Big Winners and those that are stuck in the past and do not offer their employees this option are, yes, BIG LOSERS. The difference is striking.

WDC Metro traffic including Northern Virginia (NOVA) and Southern Maryland is at crisis levels now. Construction never ceases…and to look at the dudes just leaning on their shovels looking at their cell phones as I drive by – are you kidding me??

Candidates are now refusing to cross the Legion Bridge that connects NOVA to Maryland. And the connector between NOVA and WDC (I-66 and I-95) is an absolute nightmare. A NIGHTMARE. No one seems to care much from what I can see. I saw someone staring into a portable TV set IN THEIR CAR on I-66 West the other day. C’mon, people! I saw another with a mannequin with a ball cap perched on his head set up in his passenger seat riding the HOV. This is crazy stuff, folks.

The solution? Why not trust your valued employees and cut them some slack. Let them work remotely a few days per week. If you don’t, I guarantee you they will eventually leave you and then you will be calling me to replace them.

The emerging model is after your new employee proves themselves after 90 days you give them one day and then another after six months to one year. After that, it really depends on the nature of their work and how much value you place in them. Oh, and by the way, it’s been proven that employees that work at home are 35% more productive than those working at cubicles in the office.

Observation #2: Employee Benefits compensation levels are blowing away those on the other side of the house (commercial lines). C/L is essentially dead in the water while EB compensation (for top talent) is off the charts at 10%+ annual increases.

Observation #3: Due to the low borrowing costs (interest rates), larger firms are buying up the smaller mom & pops faster than a NY minute. If you are an employee of a small to medium sized insurance agency or broker, buckle up. You could be seeing a new sign on your door very soon.

Observation #4: Many of my candidates and client hiring authorities have been encouraging me to do a weekly podcast. So, okay, I finally submit. The title is “The War on Talent.” And…I admit…they are really fun to do. I have a producer, a graphics artist, and a web designer helping me…in addition to my employees who seem to come up with new podcast ideas on a hourly basis! We launched just this past Monday and the response and feedback is already off the charts on ITUNES and STITCHER. I am also posting them all to my website, LinkedIn, and newsletters too.

There is much more to discuss and I will have more on my podcasts which will be posted each Monday morning.

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