Retaining Knowledge Workers LO11703

Joe Katzman (
Tue, 7 Jan 1997 07:53:36 -0500 (EST)

Happy New Year, everybody, and thank you to everyone who made themselves a
part of this list in 1996. Some propositions to ponder:

-- Most of the people on this list can fairly be described as "knowledge
workers," people who make their living adding value in non-physical ways:
software, consulting, process redesign, etc.

-- The fact that you're reading this indicates some level of interest in
or commitment to creating a more knowledge-based philosophy within your
organizations and/or clients. Why? Probably because you (like many of us)
see it as very important to their future success.

-- Problem: when a goodly chunk of your company's value is tied up in the
heads of the people who work there, turnover becomes more than a minor

-- One possible corollary of the points noted above is that the ability to
attract *and retain* skilled knowledge workers will be a key factor in
organizational success. Microsoft certainly believes this, for instance.

And now for the $128,000 question: how? How does one attract and retain
such people?

Are knowledge workers a different breed of cat, with different needs and
priorities? If so, what are the factors that influence their decisions?
How are innovative companies coping with this (or not)? What sorts of
things influence/have influenced YOU?

I've started to think pretty hard about these questions, and would be
fascinated to hear from the list.

Joe Katzman
"The more you know, the more you can imagine."

-- (Joe Katzman)

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