Based on experience, I’ve learned that a select number of companies don’t have to work as hard to source talent as other companies. Rather than always having to seek candidates to fill specific openings, they strategically build a steady pipeline of talent so they can be opportunistic and proactive, building the business as the talent emerges.

These companies consistently get employee referrals, have a reputation that attracts high-quality people, ethically leverage stakeholders like investors, advisors, customers, and vendors, and so on. They tap into the company’s ecosystem because they know that’s the most effective way to find candidates who align with their vision, mission, and values. As a result, these companies have a greater capacity to grow from within…not just quantitatively but also qualitatively.

This idea has been on my mind lately as I’ve reflected on our own history as a business. With only one exception, every team member we’ve had (full-time, part-time, or intern) has come through the ecosystem. And today, we’re also getting Mentors and Alumni like Paulina Caprio, Vera Kimmi, Kevin McShane, and Roy Stansbury who are giving even more of their time to Junto.

But, in particular, this idea of “growing from within” has been on my mind because of a recent development that I’m delighted to announce: one of our Alumni, Jen Davis, is joining the JuntoTeam as Partner (more on that another time).

Jen was a longtime executive at Lever Interactive, with whom she graduated from the Apprenticeship Program in 2017. She completed our “Leading with Emotional Intelligence” Master Class last year and also had a 1:1 Mentor, calls her time with Junto a life-changing experience, and shares a deep love for our community. As you can tell, she has been highly engaged with Junto for a long time, is a special person in many ways, and will bring a unique perspective to our team.

Jen made the decision to leave her last role before we began exploring the idea of her coming on board in some capacity. In fact, we had no job opening or intention to bring someone onto our team besides freelancers. But as we talked, Jen and I realized there were some needs we had that matched well with her interests and abilities.

Starting in a part-time role that we hope develops over time, Jen will focus on two areas: manage and grow JuntoWomen which has been a wonderful success thus far, and help build the size and strength of the JuntoTribe so we move closer to our BHAG of one million people.

I’m excited, touched, and grateful to have Jen on our team. I also know we’re fortunate and blessed to have the ability to grow from within.