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« Day Three at the IHRSA Institute | Main | Here's where you can get Institute coverage »

Work and hire eagles, not ducks

Debra Siena led stretching in the middle of her session.One of the main tenets of Debra Siena’s afternoon educational session “Staff Hiring, Training & Retention” was hire eagles and not ducks. For those of you who have never heard the comparison before, eagles soar while ducks waddle along.

She had five keys she laid out to be successful in all three areas:


Key #1: Be a Leader Worth Following

  • challenge status quo
  • empower and inspire
  • have a vision

Key #2: Recruit and Hire Eagles, Not Ducks

  • prepare for an interview
  • look for team players
  • clarify your expectations
  • watch for pitfalls

Key #3: Build Employee Loyalty and Value

  • launch with care
  • restate expectations
  • set SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Acvhievable, Realistic, Timely) 
  • watch for pitfalls

Key #4 - Nurture the Company Culture

  • share your vision
  • ask their expectations
  • keep them informed
  • don’t avoid coaching in order to avoid conflict
  • inspire them to motivate themselves
  • recognize them, let members recognize them
  • create a great work environment
  • walk your talk
  • never be a seagull manager

Key #5: Realize Human Capital is Your Greatest Asset

  • team retention = member retention

Debra Siena can be reached at



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