How to Attract & Retain Entrepreneurial Job Seekers

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There are many people, especially in this gig economy, whose mindset is that of a self-employed contractor—even those whose salary emanates from a corporation. If courted to, these entrepreneurial personalities become valuable assets to a company’s full-time staffing strategy.

In the following article, we explore the entrepreneurial job seekers’ mindset and bottom line value, along with strategies for attraction and retention.

To keep it simple, we’ve listed three most-common mindsets:

1. Ownership Mindset

Job seekers are expected to assume ownership of their day-to-day tasks and results. However, entrepreneurial job seekers, applying their ownership mindset, dive deeper beyond immediate outcomes. They seek to understand how their short-term results impact the organization’s long-term goals.

Take the example of a product manager who works alongside the marketing team to orchestrate a new project. They are expected to develop and roll out the result, while meeting quality, budget and timeline goals.   

However, an entrepreneurial product manager will envision and act upon the farther-reaching impacts of their development initiatives, beyond project scope and delivery. This may include researching how their product goals link with the sales team’s long-term revenue vision. As well, where do product initiatives and the CEO’s market expansion aspirations intersect?

Attracting and Retaining the ownership mindset job seeker requires empowering them to lead their function rather than constantly peering over their shoulder. It also means you must prove, during and after the interview process, that you are listening to their insights for business development and growth; and, that you will incorporate some of their ideas. This builds trust and a sustainable partnering relationship.

[Related: Employee Engagement Checklist and Calendar]

2. Resourceful Mindset

Entrepreneurs are known for bootstrapping when funds are depleting, building critical strategic partnerships to bolster sinking operations and/or finding solutions to potentially devastating problems.

This resourcefulness can benefit companies of all sizes and financial dispositions. For example, many larger companies with seemingly endless supplies of resources still can run up against financial walls.  

The situation may be as isolated as a manager needing additional budget funds to cover an unplanned capital expense. In this instance, the entrepreneur must creatively raise the funds. In one scenario, they tap into their network and leverage their influence to persuade a colleague to give them their uncommitted funds.

So, rather than executing a budget overrun, creating further debt, or simply hoping the problem will evaporate, the entrepreneurial employee deploys inventive solutions to own and resolve the problem.

Attracting and Retaining the resourceful job seeker requires seeking out entrepreneurial types that have a proven record of thinking outside the square.

You must demonstrate genuine belief in their ability to ideate and innovate solutions, especially when the chips are down. This means letting them fix problems, including the big messy ones. You also give them permission to fail occasionally, because ‘failure is the path to success.’

[Related: How to Recruit & Retain Gen Z]

3. Self-Motivated Mindset

A common term in job descriptions, ‘self-motivated,’ is defined  as “the initiative to undertake or continue a task or activity without another’s prodding or supervision.”

And, while many job seekers glibly profess this trait, many actually fall short.

However, the entrepreneurial job seeker’s innate internal drive propels them through tireless job journeys with perpetual optimism. When other employees throw up their hands, a self-motivated entrepreneur will say, “There’s got to be another way.”

When it is 5 o’clock, but they are in the middle of a project, self-motivation pushes them toward the finish line before signing off for the day. Moreover, their desire to do more and be more refuels their work tank, over and over and over again.

They are reliably optimistic and hard-working, and they desire continual challenges.

Attracting and Retaining: By marketing your company’s values in innovation and change you create an advantage versus companies who merely maintain the status quo. Moreover, by providing the self-motivated entrepreneur regular puzzles to solve and ongoing, long-term projects, you feed their always simmering ambitions.

Finally, the self-motivated employee likes to be the hero from time to time, saving the day, helping you out of a bad fix and/or simply making or saving the company money.

By Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter for Glassdoor.com.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: News Headlines , Entrepreneurship , Jobs , Small Business

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