4 Marketing Leaders on Hiring and Retaining Talent

By Joanna Valente


In a complicated and changing time for marketers, retaining and hiring talent can be difficult. Meeting the cultural and technological needs of consumers can feel overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be. Leading with empathy and agility can help set a team up for success. And part of being successful is enabling employees to be able to have the confidence to test and learn — and glean these insights into actions.

Fostering a diverse and inclusive community, and accommodating people's needs (whether with remote work, a flexible schedule, or other support systems), helps when it comes to hiring and retaining talent (which ANA's John Wolfe wrote about extensively here).

Below are quotes from marketing leaders on how to create a supportive, equitable, and enjoyable work environment and culture.

"I believe in the currency of favors. Do people favors, pass that on, help people out. Allow people to access your connections to help them. And if you're looking for a mentor, you must go as senior as you can."
— Kathleen Saxton, managing director of strategic advisory at EMEA and global talent leader at MediaLink

"A talent-centric philosophy should also guide policy regarding remote work. Media companies do themselves a disservice if they cut pay for employees who choose to work remotely or feign to offer employee choice while forcing talent into the office two days a week. Pay employees based on their skills and experience — and if a job can truly be done on a fully remote basis, offer the latter to stay competitive in the labor market.

Finally, talent is demanding that recruiting processes center the unique contributions of the employee and the unique selling points of the company. This means selling jobs based on a company's distinct aspirations, not pumping out canned job descriptions that read like laundry lists of tasks."
— Adam Warburton, VP of talent acquisition and people at WorkReduce

"There's a concept that one of my colleagues introduced me to very recently called, 'rock and restore.' And what I appreciate about it is its recognition that inside of your job, you have the right to expect the ability to rock, to do that four-day jam, if that's what you and your team are motivated and passionate about.

But when it's over, inside of your job, there needs to be something restorative and replenishing and regenerative, so that you are ready to rock again. But the old historical fetishization of hustle culture values the idea that you kill yourself at work and then go home, and that hopefully you restore yourself there — that you find some new energy so that you're ready to come back in Monday morning and do it again.

However, what's changed in this modern workforce, especially among younger employees, is that they expect that there is both of those things happening inside of their work experience — not that work is one experience and real life is another experience; they're seeing them together."
— Courtney Buechert, president and U.S. chair at Eleven Inc

"I'm a member of ColorComm, which has a wonderful resource for hiring needs. Also, even when you put out job descriptions, you have to write them in a way that they're not excluding people that may not think that they're right for the job. It takes more time to put them together this way, but it's important and it does change the kind of talent that applies."
— Michelle Wong, CMO at Sprinkles

Joanna Valente is a director of editorial and content development at ANA.

The views and opinions expressed in Industry Insights are solely those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the ANA or imply endorsement from the ANA.