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How familiar are you with the concept of being a “net exporter of talent?”

SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 210,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our e-newsletter.

How familiar are you with the concept of being a “net exporter of talent?”

  • Very — I’m a great example of how to do it well: 14%
  • Somewhat — I know the term but don’t actively think about it: 14%
  • Not very — I understand it but don’t know how to do it: 8% 
  • Not at all — What does that even mean?: 64%

Build them and get rid of them. Being a “net exporter of talent” means you bring people onto your team, help them grow and develop, then send them off to the next big opportunity on another team in your organization. You’ve exported more talent than you’ve brought in therefore you’re a “net exporter” of talent. This is a technique that’s very straightforward to apply. It’s good for your team members, good for the organization, and good for you. You build a reputation for being a leader who’s more interested in building people and the organization than you are in hoarding talent.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS, author of  the upcoming book “The Elegant Pitch: Create a Compelling Recommendation, Build Broad Support, and Get it Approved” and “One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership.”