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Finding Talent in a Dwindling Talent Pool

11-19-2011

I was struck this past week by Facebook's Mark Zuckerbergs visit to Harvard to recruit student talent for the social networking site. His goal involved the possibility of expanding with a Boston area satellite office, but more importantly, it was about reaching out to prospective employees who could potentially join Facebook in the future. This is the best time to recruit seniors from Harvard and MIT classes of 2012 said Zuckerberg (who dropped out of Harvard in 2004 to launch Facebook).

Theres a lot of really smart people and a lot of them are making decisions on where theyre going when they graduate in the next couple of weeks..its a great time to come. As we think about the challenges our business faces, I think we can take a cue from Zuckerberg when it comes to outreach that we do for our radio stations in an effort to expand a dwindling base of job applicants in all types of positions. Here are some suggestions.

We need to seriously elevate the importance of interns and what they do within our radio stations. The days of the intern just mailing prizes out have to disappear and we need to advance their learning curve to protect and grow our future talent pool. Lets tap their creativity and knowledge in social media so we can grow and expand our profile in this vital category of listener interaction. Does your Radio Station have a strong relationship with all of the high schools, colleges or universities in your market?

Have you had talent or management go out and speak to a class or seminar as a way to build that relationship within your market and give back? Have you gone out in the same spirit, as Zuckerberg, to tell your story for potential company recruitment? I applaud the spirit of Edison Medias 30 under 30 search which tries to provide a push to the next generation of broadcasters. Lets take that same intent and step up our recruitment within the college market.

Based on the targeting strategies of your radio station, have you considered promotional opportunities on the college level? If youre in a big college town isnt that a part of feeling the true pulse of your market? Maybe next year at this time we will have some new faces within our organizations and maybe they can motivate us all to get to that new level of excellence we deserve.

Buzz Knight is the Vice President of Program Development for Greater Media. He can be reached at bknight@greatermediaboston.com




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