What types of employees do you attract?

Published 10:15 pm Thursday, October 12, 2017

By Elaine Lankford

Have you ever thought about what first attracted you to your spouse, your best friend or anyone else you are close to in life? Chances are you saw something in them that felt familiar.

I realize that scientifically “opposites attract,” but relationally, when two people are completely different, the relationship is hard to maintain. Rather, relationships work best when there are similarities and differences between the persons involved.

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With that in mind, let’s explore the Law of Magnetism. In “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership” by John Maxwell, this law states: “Who you are is who you attract.”

Ronald Reagan once said: “Surround yourself with great people; delegate authority; get out of the way.” But how do we make sure we attract the best people to our businesses?

If you’re a business leader, take inventory of those that work for you. What are their top qualities? What was it that made you want to hire them?

Once you have your list together, take a look in the mirror. Are the characteristics you listed things that you have always seen in yourself? I’m guessing many of them are.

Let’s go one step further. In his book, Maxwell points out several areas where employers and employees can share common ground: generation, attitude, background, values, energy, giftedness, and as we have discussed before, leadership ability.

Take another look at your workforce. Have you surrounded yourself with people who share common ground with you? For example, is everyone about the same age? Do you share common values?

By doing this mental exercise, two things may have happened. You may have realized that you are, indeed, attracting people who have similar, but not completely the same, characteristics. On the other hand, you may discover that you aren’t attracting the people you really want to attract at all. Either way, consider the end result.

If you have attracted good, quality employees who reflect who you are, it’s time to take a look at your weaknesses. Although it is helpful to have a team that seems congruent, it is also important to have a team that offsets each other’s weaknesses.

If there are areas of leadership, skill or ability you do not possess and you don’t hire someone who does, you end up with a company that is vulnerable against the competition. That doesn’t mean we hire unsavory people for the sake of their talent, but it means we understand it takes people who are not necessarily attracted by us to fulfill necessary roles.

“Attracting people unlike yourself requires a high degree of intentionality,” Maxwell states. “To succeed at it, people must believe in you, and the vision you share must be compelling.”

For those of you with the opposite problem, who have attracted what you would say are the “wrong people,” you must also take the time to look within yourself and identify what character flaws may be hindering you from attracting the right people. Go back to the Law of Process and work on improving your leadership ability. All of us have areas we can improve.

Now that you understand the Law of Magnetism, you know the secret of how some of the most successful businesses in the world gained outstanding staff members.

Elaine Lankford is a John Maxwell certified coach, teacher, trainer, and speaker. She is the founder of Transforming Love Ministries, LLC and a board member of the Christian Business Coalition of Hampton Roads. Email her at elaine@elainelankford.com.