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CEOs offer diverse ways of luring and keeping good workers

CEOs were asked: The One Community, One Goal initiative is now squarely focused on talent. What would you do to lure, and keep, more talent in South Florida?
CEOs were asked: The One Community, One Goal initiative is now squarely focused on talent. What would you do to lure, and keep, more talent in South Florida? Getty Images/iStockphoto

CEOs were asked: The One Community, One Goal initiative is now squarely focused on talent. What would you do to lure, and keep, more talent in South Florida?


I’d invest in rapid transit, whether it’s from Homestead, the FIU area or Miami Beach. Young professionals are not as interested in owning cars and driving, and our current public transportation system, as well as Brightline, can only get you so far. Another area is education, as professionals want to move to where the best schools are. Florida should make stronger investments in these areas given our trillion-dollar state economy.

Tony Argiz, chairman, CEO, Morrison, Brown, Argiz & Farra, LLC (MBAF)


Florida has its own natural lure — sunny days, no winter coats, and access to so much diversity. As my husband and co-founder Brett says, “If Florida is so terrible, why does everyone keep moving here?” I think we need to lure more companies here to support the amount of people available for work who already are living here.

Jennifer Cramer, CEO, co-founder, The Spice Lab


    At Stantec, we do our part to attract and retain talent locally by offering competitive salaries and benefits packages. As the City of Miami continues to grow, so too does the cost of living. Retaining talent means providing a wage that allows people to live and thrive in our vibrant city.

    Adriana Jaegerman, senior principal, managing leader, Stantec


    Aggressively recruit technology, high-tech manufacturing, and similar companies to South Florida by “packaging” existing federal, state, and local incentives so that decision-makers can readily ascertain the value of our community. The Beacon Council has been making efforts like this for decades and it works, but further community efforts, such as creating direct lines of communication between these employers and South Florida schools and universities, lets everyone collaborate to realign education in order to produce more industry-ready graduates.

    José E. Latour, founding partner, LatourLaw


    Small businesses play a vital role in South Florida’s economy. If major corporations and other large buying institutions do more business with minority and small businesses, more talent will stay and be lured to the region because employers will be able to pay better wages and provide great benefits. Unfortunately, there is still a brain drain, especially of African-American talent. Both the private and public sector should implement more initiatives that keep our best talent in the region.

    Beatrice Louissaint, president, CEO, Florida State Minority Supplier Development Council


    A region’s culture and lifestyle are an important aspect of talent recruitment. With Inter Miami CF, South Florida will have a professional team for every major professional sport and we certainly hope that will entice some to live, work and play in our community. Also, the tech office hub component of Miami Freedom Park will further solidify Miami’s role in the all-important tech economy.

    Jorge Mas, chairman and co-founder, MasTec


    At eMerge Americas, we are bringing together entrepreneurs, investors, business executives and innovators from all over the world in order to help build and foster a sustainable tech hub in South Florida. We will continue to build on these efforts, which help to create more opportunities for talent, as well as help to attract more talent.

    Melissa Medina, president, eMerge


    We need to make moving to South Florida as user-friendly as possible. At Miami Business School, we leverage our convening power to bring together C-suite business people with similar interests. The School recently held a Movers and Shakers reception to accelerate networking between successful entrepreneurs who have recently moved here and those who have been here for decades. We know that 25 percent of the 1,200 students who enroll at Miami Business School each year are from Florida — but 75 percent want to stay in Florida. We are an important magnet for global talent so we are introducing our students to corporate recruiters from the day they arrive.

    John Quelch, vice provost, University of Miami Dean, Miami Business School and Leonard M. Miller University Professor


    Entrepreneurs are at the center of this problem (and solution). So how can we maximize the chances of attracting and retaining strong entrepreneurs? Access to capital is still a significant challenge and unfortunately, results in losing companies that relocate to have access to that capital. I would continue to think of how can we bridge that capital gap.

    Ariel Quiñones, co-founder, Ironhack


    Although competitive compensation (including benefits) is important, ambitious candidates also look for opportunities for professional growth. To attract and keep top talent, smart employers develop engaging experiences tailored for their employees’ development. In return, employees feel personally valued (and perhaps loyal if other firms come calling).

    Chana Sheldon, executive director, MOCA





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