Written by Expert Panel, Forbes Coaches Council (including Manex President & CEO Gene Russell)

Reposted with Permission — Originally on Forbes.com

It’s no secret that building a world-class company starts with getting the right people involved. If you have access to the right talent, the next steps for building a top organization are easier to take.

Attracting that talent is a whole different story, however. With the competitiveness in most fields these days, it can be an ever-increasing battle to get that top-tier talent a company needs to stay competitive.

To help businesses struggling with this aspect of growing their talent pool, 14 professionals from Forbes Coaches Council offer their own insight into how companies can approach the task of attracting A-player talent to their teams.

1. Recognize The Value Of Nontraditional Backgrounds

A big problem is that recruiting has been reduced to “checking boxes,” as many employers operate under the false premise that someone with an atypical career path poses a greater risk to the company. This has no basis whatsoever in reality. As a result, many highly qualified candidates are unfairly excluded from the hiring process for roles where they could add great value to the organization. – Joshua Cutler, Teach the Trainer Consulting

2. Allow Great People To Do Great Things

Steve Jobs said, “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” Companies need to rely on the candidate’s skills and abilities after offer acceptance as much as they rely on the skills and abilities during the interview process. Give them the tools they need and the freedom to use them. Top talent will gravitate to you. – Don Pippin, area|Talent

3. Offer Developmental Opportunities

Provide developmental opportunities that increase long-term engagement and retention, such as on-the-job challenging projects and stretch assignments. These new responsibilities will give A-players the opportunity to develop and use their new skills immediately, and keep them highly motivated with career growth, autonomy and empowerment. – Christie Samson

4. Enlist All Employees As ‘Recruiters’

If you have already established a positive workplace culture, you will likely have employees who are the best brand representatives you could ask for. And your A-players likely know other A-players! Encourage your team members to share in the responsibility of building the group and maintaining the positive culture, and you’ll likely benefit from many strong candidate recommendations. – Jessica Glazer, Center for Creative Leadership

5. Be Inclusive In Your Hiring Policies

Refuse to accept the fallacy that it is hard to find top talent from different cultures, ethnicities, abilities and genders. Create an inclusive and welcoming culture where individuals can contribute in a manner they find fulfilling. Ensure employees feel valued and rewarded, knowing their unique perspectives are exactly what the business is looking for and their insights are put to good use. – La’Wana Harris, La’Wana Harris Inc.

6. Hire For The Person, Not The Role

Passionate employees who are committed to the company mission and work yield the highest results. To attract top talent, hiring managers and companies should invest more time into understanding candidate values and aspirations beyond the role. – Marnie Mclain, Marnie Mclain Coaching

7. Convey The No-Ceiling Challenge

A core feature of an A-player is an inner drive to stand out and make a difference. They are attracted to challenging opportunities to build something new or achieve something of significance. A-players will lean forward and show greater engagement when discussing big goals and opportunities for impact. B-players will lean back and consider the extra work, and ask themselves, “Is it worth it?” – Joe Frodsham, CMP

8. Embrace Purpose Management

Today’s top talent want to work for a purpose-driven company. It’s not enough to point to your mission. Can everyone in the organization see how their work ties to purpose? From the top executive team to the smallest execution team, can everyone describe how their work serves customers and provides value? Connecting the work and telling the story with clarity will attract and retain the best. – Ronica Roth, Elevate.to

9. Dial In On Your Company Culture First

Having a place where people want to work spreads through word-of-mouth and the way you talk about and reflect your company. A-players want to work in positive teams and work environments, and having a positive company culture focused on happiness, long-term employee retention and career growth and development opportunities will attract them. – Anna-Vija McClain, Piccolo Marketing

10. Focus On The Candidate Over The Process

Companies should treat every potential hire with the same level of enthusiasm they show their most important prospects. With this approach, there tends to be a greater focus on ensuring every interaction adds value to the recruit. True A-players have options, so it is important to remember you have to help them understand why your company is, or will be, their best option. – Donald Hatter, Donald Hatter Inc.

11. Get Input From The Team

The team can offer insight into the talent needed to maximize creativity and performance. Often, their input can help narrow the focus for building or completing the team. Team members may also lend ideas for locating the best talent through their professional connections. Then, the interview process can be aligned with the specific needs to attract A-players. – Deborah Hightower, Deborah Hightower, Inc.

12. Offer Rewards, Growth And Elite Culture

Top talent across industries is attracted to autonomy, growth opportunities, tribes of elite professionals and outsized rewards. Elite athletes want to be around other elite athletes. They want to learn and grow and they want to know that success will be rewarded. Create a culture around this and you will attract A-players. – Shefali Raina, Alpha Lane Partners

13. Pay And Hire Above Industry Standard

I worked for a company that overpaid. They attracted the best because word got out. Often the bonus or commission—both performance-based—lifted them far above their industry peers. The queue of new candidates was always long. – Gene Russell, Manex Consulting

14. Be Authentic In Vision, Mission And Branding

Set a clear cultural mission, a living breathing statement of excellence encompassing an authentic and unique perspective that all can visibly see being carried out day to day with employees and customers. Tying brand to culture can be as simple as having each employee state what “culture” means to them and keeping the mission alive in recruitment campaigns. A-players want honesty, integrity, and clarity! – Debbie Ince, Executive Talent Finders, Inc