Carol Schultz’s New Book “Powered by People”

Carol Schultz’s new book is Powered by People: How Talent-Centric Organizations Master Recruitment, Retention, and Revenue (and How to Build One). As the title would suggest, being worded similarly to MLA formatting’s thesis statement, Schultz makes the argument that the true backbone of any organization, company, or overall corporate enterprise is its employee base, not the appropriate schemings and calculations of the CEO, or upper, CEO-affiliated echelons. Frankly, as far as Schultz is concerned, knowing how to lead means uniting everyone top down in a shared goal. Something they can become a real warrior for, not just in a professional milieu, but within a personal context as well. In essence, a true leader is a people person – pun intended – first and foremost.


“Seeing a ‘problem’ employee walk out the door isn’t the solution you think it is, especially if the problem was you all along. You’re going to be churning through new hires, probably telling others about how much trouble you’re having with recruitment when the truth is something else entirely.

You don’t have a recruiting problem. You have a strategy problem,” she writes. “Strategy means you don’t make serious business decisions in a vacuum, decisions that basically push your most talented top-performers out the door. Strategy sees the long picture and works backward to figure out what actions to take now if you want to reach that future goal. When you refuse to pay your best and brightest top dollar, getting and keeping top players will be difficult. Your chances at being a TCO will be low…

Companies are only loyal to you as much as it suits their needs and interests. Consequently, you should only be loyal to them as much as it suits your needs and interests. That doesn’t mean you should leave a job every one to three years as many do, but it does mean keeping that knowledge at the heart of what you’re thinking.

During the collapse of 2008-2009, companies let go of millions and millions of people and saw their stock prices go up. That’s what happens when you cut hundreds of millions from payroll. Some similar things happened in 2020. Maybe a limp strategy will get you C-level people who are content to make considerably less money, but because of their lackluster drive you’ll also get the chance to enjoy making considerably less money. About the only thing you’re doing is making it easy for recruiters to entice your most talented people away and place them in companies where they are valued.”

Who knew telling it like it is could also be done so diplomatically? Dare I say, to the ear-flicking and scowls of the traditionalist – think Working Girl – so compassionately? Well, apparently Schultz proves this can be so. “…my goal is to get…CEO(s) to realize…they are the problem. They aren’t listening to their employees, or even bothering to ask why the engineer or sales rep is leaving. And, even when they do exit interviews, the now-former employee isn’t honest about why they’re leaving. It’s easier to cite compensation instead of acknowledging the real issue: management.”

Nicole Killian

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Nicole loves to go cross country skiing, swimming, reading and critiquing books, listening and critiquing music, some culinary arts, pottery, spending time with my daughter, cheesy horror films.

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