There are many things that you may do to grow your organization. Here is an organizational development idea that I thought was both unique and insightful.

The most effective means to building an effective and productive team is open and honest communication.
– Gregg Gregory

Does your organization have an alumni program in place? During a trip from Atlanta to Washington, I sat next to a woman who works in the marketing department for a large law firm in Washington DC. As we talked, she told me of a way her firm attracts and hires new and talented people. She actually heads up the Alumni program and, just like your high school or college, they have alumni parties and gatherings as well as newsletters to their alumni.

Are You a Terrific Teammate?At first this sounded a little strange, then, as we continued to talk, the concept made perfect sense. If your organization has averaged 250 employees over the past 15 years and have held a constant turnover rate of 8%, that equates to 20 people per year. Multiply that by 15 years and now you have 300 people in your alumni group.

Not everyone needs to be invited to participate – let’s face it, some people you don’t want back, or you don’t want any referrals they may have. Also, in some cases, they may not want to participate in the program themselves. If they have gone to your competitor are they going to be quick to give you good referrals? Not likely.

So, let’s assume that of the 300 potential people in your program you have about 15% who will not participate – that brings you to just over 250 people to market to.

Now you ask, what do you mean market to? Who else knows what your company or organization does better than a former employee. Maybe they have simply moved on because they were no longer were growing at your company and they left on good terms. Maybe they even have friends still there. If you market to them about new positions or new products they may very well know someone who could benefit. Maybe they have changed direction in their work, but know other friends who could benefit and now they make a referral back to you for a new hire.

If this person was a good employee, don’t you believe they would give a good referral to potential employees they may know? And don’t you think those referrals might be good employees too?

The larger the organization the more this makes sense and the greater the rewards. So, if your organization is growing, why not put this into play now and your growth plan will be set for the future.

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