How to Take the Reins of New Orleans’ Talent Needs
This article was written by Alejandra Guzman and published to LinkedIn August 29, 2017:
Putting a community on the track of growth and prosperity requires a focus on talent.
This is important for economic development because the better equipped our community is to attract, retain and prepare talent, the better we’ll fare in growing and attracting businesses to New Orleans.
Being in the right location is a key ingredient in business success. Depending on the type of business, companies examine a number of aspects of the potential location, but what across the board continues to be a crucial variable is the availability of talent in a given city.
An additional economic development perspective is that the clustering of talented individuals increases innovation, entrepreneurship and productivity, and promotes growth and development in a region.
This is why The New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA), an organization that I´m honored to be part of, includes attracting and retaining talent as a pillar of our work.
We do this through a multi-tiered approach that includes facilitating career connections, branding New Orleans as a place to do business, and promoting equity by supporting hard-to-employ demographics as they work to obtain job opportunities. In addition to this programmatic work, we partner with key groups throughout the city, including The Network for Economic Opportunity, The Workforce Development Board, EMPLOY Collaborative and New Orleans Works, to ensure that collectively we move toward creating the systemic change required to make New Orleans a city that retains talent more permanently.
Our goal is to prepare, attract and retain the talent that will encourage economic development and help achieve our vision to reposition New Orleans as the next great American city for business investment, quality of life and economic opportunity.
It’s important that the broader community joins us on this quest. For example, NOLABA held a public symposium Sept. 28 to spotlight how New Orleans takes on these issues. This was a great opportunity to have a conversation about how we can all collaborate to achieve our goals to attract and retain talent.
Talent could be a true differentiator for New Orleans if we commit to taking the reins of our talent needs. Without a doubt, cities and companies that pay attention to this pillar have the highest potential for growth and development.