Vistage Research Center

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Market your strong employment brand and attract top talent

Growing a Household Brand

Watch TalenTrust’s webinar: Leverage Your Employment Brand to Attract Top Talent

Dan Price, CEO of Gravity Payments in Seattle, dramatically shifted his company’s hiring brand from unknown to known when he slashed his own pay and raised the annual salary for his 120 employees to $70,000. Dan and his company were thrust into the spotlight as his initiative went viral. He appeared on the national morning news circuit and on the covers of business publications like Inc. and Entrepreneur. More than 600 job applications immediately poured in, and Gravity Payments experienced unprecedented candidate hiring choice, based on the company’s strong employment brand. Your employment brand is the experience you offer your employees and how they describe that experience to others. 


I do not suggest that you repeat Dan’s specific and drastic measure. However do think that Dan’s story is an excellent example of shifting from unknown to known and leveraging employment branding to attract top talent.

Most potential employees don’t even know you exist as an employer.

Your employment brand is likely non-existent, as you focus more on marketing to customers than on marketing to employees. While your business is at the center of your universe, it may be a best-kept secret to those who could be working for you.  In this competitive labor market, you need to understand, enhance, and leverage your employment brand in order to find and keep the most talented employees.

Sell potential employees on your company’s opportunities.

Your first step is to assess engagement levels of your current employees, perhaps using the Gallup Q12 Survey, to truly understand your employment brand. Only then can you further enhance your culture and employment brand, and begin promoting your brand to passive job candidates. You must get prepared to “sell” potential employees on the opportunities at your company.

As a result of this effort, you’ll experience two key outcomes related to recruitment and retention:

  • Your choice of multiple candidates who fit your culture and requirements of skill/experience;
  • The freedom to evaluate and upgrade your current employees who are either toxic and/or are underperforming.

I challenge you to shift from unknown to known as an employer, and I guarantee you’ll see the rewards of this effort.


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