It has been too long, my friends! But here is the latest Stuff You Should Know that I’ve been tracking in my travels these past few weeks.

Fresh Data! Get it while it’s hot! We’re winding down our data collection on this year’s “Hire, Engage, Retain” study, so expect to see a lot of publishing from us on various findings in the coming weeks. But I wanted to share a few sneak previews. Number one, we asked organizations which phrases best described how their organization defines or evaluates employee engagement. Just like the consumer business, most leaders agreed that if you keep coming back, and would invite others to join you, you’re engaged. Individuals staying with their organization, and the volume of employee referrals were considered to be the best gauges of engagement health among our respondents.

When it comes to retention, workers want it all – great managers, great pay, great opportunities to grow. 70% of respondents indicated manager relationship had significant impact on engagement and retention. 68% said the same of compensation, and 65% rated development opportunities as a significant influencer. And while 70% of organizations indicate that their managers conduct an annual performance review, just 51% train them on how to give coaching and feedback. That means nearly a third (27%) of managers out there giving reviews are going on nothing but instinct. There’s a ton more where that came from, so stay tuned.

The “DIY” Passive Candidate. I was at the SilkRoad Connections conference last week, speaking on developing performance management as an organizational capability (more on that to come), and saw some fairly startling data points from Indeed and their Talent Attraction Study. They included these two:

  • 64% of employed adults say they would feel more confident that a job is the right fit for them if they picked the company and applied versus if a recruiter contacted them.
  • 52% say they think they would be more successful in a job they found on their own versus one they got from a recruiter or company that contacted them.

So basically, don’t call me, I’ll call you. If this is a continuing trend, recruiters will need to rethink their approach to passive candidates, and focus on resources for the “DIY” candidate. It will be more important than ever to take a page from the marketing playbook, and get candidates far down the funnel before we “earn” the right to approach. I for one will be watching to see if this is a growing trend.

What would Future You say? Here at Aptitude, like a lot of your firms, we’re trying to make mindfulness and health a way of life. One filter that helps me when I’m struggling to make time to meditate or get up and get to the gym is, “Will Future Me be glad I did it?” Now, sometimes the answer is “Of course not, but I’m going to eat this cheesecake anyway.” But that little pause can help you reevaluate in the moment if the small things you’re doing are leading you to the big goals. This is important in business, too. Will Future You be enriched by that standing meeting on your calendar that no one remembers the point of? Will Future You be happy you spent time on that super customized project that wasn’t really a fit to your core competencies? As life and the fiscal year keep zooming by, do yourself a favor and do a solid for Future You.

That’s all for now, until Future Me and Future You meet here again soon.