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Article excerpt

It is not surprising that agencies are struggling to find good people, given the growth in the communications business in recent years.

Our 'talent pond' can only nurture so many fish and if it is overharvested, problems will ensue. Nordoes it help that our spawning grounds are being farmed by new predators from the more lucrative waters of the dotcom world of the City.

While one might argue that skills shortage is a cyclical problem, we need to find ways of handling it now. Perhaps a more sympathetic approach to employees needs to evolve. Maybe employers should acknowledge our business is highly stressful and do something about it--more than just providing alcohol on Friday evenings.

I believe a more sympathetic and flexible attitude to recruiting and retaining our workforce would have a highly motivating and retentive effect.

Take, for example, the lifestyle seekers. These are often in their late 20s to early 30s and are seeking a sabbatical, perhaps precipitated by maternity or paternity issues. …