Managing Talent Essay

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MANAGING TALENT: Can Yahoo Still Attract Tech Workers? In many fields, workers are practically begging employers to hire them, but in information technology, the demand for talent often outstrips the supply. Employers struggle to attract and keep software experts, always concerned about the risk that their best people will leave for a better offer somewhere else. For a high-tech worker, what often amounts to a better offer is a chance to be a part of the exciting new thing, whatever that is. That presents a challenge for Yahoo. A couple of decades ago, the web search company (now an advertising, news, and e-mail company) was one of the hot businesses of the Internet age. Today Yahoo’s sites attract 700 million visitors a month, and the company’s 14,000 employees are well paid, but the excitement is no longer there. To the industry, Yahoo is part of the old Internet. The best and brightest want to be part of the new Internet, especially social media, cloud computing, and mobile apps. In that environment, Yahoo is seeking pathways for growth even as some of its best talent is slipping out the doors. Greg Cohn, who worked his way up from business strategist to senior director responsible for new initiatives, admires Yahoo’s management but left to start his own business. A vice president of Yahoo’s operations in Latin America also left, and so has the company’s chief trust officer, who moved to a position at Google. In another sign of employee dissatisfaction, a recruiter told a reporter, “If you call nine people at Yahoo, you’ll get nine calls back.” In other words, leaving sounds like an option for just about everyone. Executives are preparing for a faster exodus as job growth heats up elsewhere in Silicon Valley. Because of these trends, Yahoo forecasts that it will need to do intensive recruiting. But how do you get people to think about working for a company

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