Thursday, August 16, 2007

Retention Strategy - Career a la carte

In line with the upcoming ERA conference at Hyderabad , I am tempted to continue on the "retention" theme for a couple of more posts.

Late last week, there was an article highlighting the attempts by India Inc's conglomerates to recruit and retain the best talent, by offering their people a buffet of career choices.

The article focusses specifically on L&T, Mahindra & Mahindra and the Tata groups leveraging ability to straddle across diverse sectors as a talent bait -'so that they don't get trapped in one company -as they could still stay in the group if they are excited about some new sector".

One can so easily see the USP now..action in the HOT sector. Most bright peope want to catch the tide -on the way up- of a sunrise industry!

It was interesting to note, about 2 decades ago, the emphasis was more on a career -and not just the role or a job. Hindustan Lever -HLL then had the most prestigeous management trainee scheme that promised a meaty grounding in the area of one's specialisation. A marketing professional could expect to have alternate stints in the field (sales) and then the corporate (brand management, promotion ) etc -so that one had a well rounded career.

In the seventies and the eighties, it was the DCM Shriram group -which probably prepared the 'best managers' - some of whom -stayed on in the group to take positions of highest responsibilities, while a several of them strayed away from the group, climbed the rungs of most top MNC and Indian companies. The tactic then- the group had two streams of trainees- one the Management Trainees -MBAs who would grow into Unit head positions possibly within 10yrs of experience -as distinct from the 'executive trainees' who were bright graduates who would rise to the head of departments in a similar period.

Instant gratification now?? Time will be the best judge -which is a better diet!!

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