Going forward, successful companies will be increasingly defined by the human component. Market share and sustainability will no longer be based on having the best production process or supply chain, but on having the best humans who can innovate, adapt and identify new opportunities.

But how do you attract these humans in the first place? And how do you retain them?

We asked four industry leaders to share their insights – Paula Hulley, CEO of IAB SA; Jonty Fisher, CEO of Ofyt; Michelle Beh, MD and Strategist of Jupiter Drawing Room CT; and Aileen Lamb, MD of New Media.

Talent likes talent

For Paula Hulley, the newly appointed CEO of the IAB SA, it’s quite straightforward: “Nothing is more important to attract talent then talent. Like building any great brand, positive recommendations, references or testimonials from people who love your brand and why they love your brand, are the best way to get more people to connect with your brand and join your brand community.

It is imperative to hire talented people who are not only the very best, but also deeply committed to building the brand because they believe in the purpose. In turn, they will attract similarly like-minded people”.

Word of mouth

Jonty Fisher, CEO of Ofyt, “In our opinion, the best way to attract top talent is to create a great creative culture that people talk about – one that feels refreshing, different and rewarding of great talent, and great work. Advertising is a people-based industry and a small industry at that, so our people usually are our best advocates in attracting other great people.”

The c-word

Michelle Beh, Managing and Strategy Director, The Jupiter Drawing Room Cape Town, suggests leaders focus on three key areas to attract top talent:

“Culture, reputation and growth. We use social media platforms and PR to re-inforce that Jupiter is a great place to work at; by showcasing all the fun that we have, our people and the work that we create.

Building a culture is a conscious effort but it should be fluid and organic. As a creative company, we organise team outings that inspire our employees, events where we can connect as individuals and always celebrate our successes (not just the business’ but also our employees’ success). It’s as important to keep top talents as attracting them. To do that, we ensure that they are given opportunities to grow their experiences and skills, e.g. providing mentorship, allowing them to lead projects (outside of their usual responsibilities), and sending them on training and courses.”

Flexibility and trust

Aileen Lamb, managing director of New Media, echoes much of Michelle’s sentiments: “Attracting top talent starts with creating a business culture which supports flexibility, autonomy, trust, growth and innovation. At New Media we offer a flexible working environment, so our people come and go as needed with complete trust that the job will get done. We have a flat structure which allows anyone in the business to bring ideas to the table and be heard.


We celebrate success openly and publicly recognise great work in the moment. Top talent choose to join our business to be a part of our unique culture where they have the ability to succeed and grow as individuals.”

How you can do it

Feel like you still need more ideas? Or worried that once you get these top humans, you won’t know how to keep them? Then our 10-week course is for you. HR for non-HR managers is aimed at leaders, managers and business owners who don’t want to take on HR roles, but do want to know how to attract, nurture, manage and retain top talent.

It delves into best practices and new ways of recognising and valuing people at work, along with practical ways for positively influencing human behaviour. Tailored to cultural diversity and legislation unique to South Africa, the course speaks to managing organisational change, and developing key talent in a way that aligns with 21st Century business needs.

For more information or to register, click here. Alternatively, call 0861 878 258 or pop us an email at welcome@redandyellow.co.za.