Skip navigation Jump to main navigation

Applications for 2024 Columbia Summer Session programs are now open!

Close alert

James B. White, CEO of James B. White Consulting, Joins Steve Safier and Jane Gios’s Integrated Talent Management Class

James B. White visited Dr. Steve Safier and Jane Gios’s Integrated Talent Management Strategies class for a highly informative guest lecture regarding Recruitment & Selection Strategies. Prior to leading his own firm, James B. White Consulting, James held Diversity and Inclusion leadership positions at Lord Abbott & Co, LLC, Oppenheimer Funds and Credit Suisse, and a senior Learning & Development role at Merrill Lynch.

James began his talk by pointing out that organizations are more employee-centric today, involving a shift in how they attract and retain employees.  As James said, “Organizations must understand what employees want, what they need, how to do a better job for them, how to create a ‘space’ for them, and how… to support them further. This new norm has only intensified…with COVID.  ”   

He continued, “In the past year and half, most of the people changing jobs took the time to reflect on what is important, and pivoted or rejiggered their personal priorities, such as family, friends, and life.  [They asked] themselves questions such as, ‘Am I happy?’, ‘What is all this stuff about corporate life?’, ‘Does it work it?’”  As a result, companies had to refocus their employee value proposition, their culture, and their internal practices in order to better connect and engage with employees. Specifically, James said, “Organizations need to understand that employees are very interested in finding purpose in their work and [that they] value their time even more.”

The conversation continued with Dr. Safier asking, “When it comes to recruitment, how do companies balance what they need from employees with what potential employees are looking for?” James responded that he asks a lot of questions when interviewing candidates to assess their interests. ”Companies must be prepared with their employee value proposition and be ready and well equipped to describe the company’s culture. Leaders must be prepared to ‘describe the culture in concrete terms’ and to do so, leaders must look at the internal data of employee retention, engagement, hiring, and diversity. In addition, leaders must engage with their employees and listen to their stories, such as what employees are experiencing with their benefits, flexibility, equity, in addition to engagement. “

James added, “The landscape for HR people and recruiting, in comparison to the past 20 years, has vastly evolved from a transactional reflection to a strategic one… HR professionals now have a seat at the C-Suite table and… recruiting is a critical function at any organization.”

Thank you, James, for an insightful and interesting evening!