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Great post and insights, Laura. We forget our solid middle tier of employees (70-80% of the workforce) at our own peril. As I wrote last month in my blog:

All the buzz seems to be around “what to do about retaining your top performers.” Have you been concerned about these second-tier employees? They have just as much knowledge about your workplace and competitive differentiators, just as much desire to work hard, and have likely been a powerful force behind the success of your top performers.

So why would they consider leaving? For the same reasons as any others in your workforce – overworked and underappreciated. It’s just these employees who can do something about it. Deloitte’s research says up to 44% of employees actively looking will take action on their turnover intentions. Can your workforce handle that large of a shake-up – especially in your top two tiers of performers?

(research citations in the original post at: http://bit.ly/cI6raT)

I couldn't agree more, Derek. There's buzz around getting the most bang for your talent investment buck and this 'tier 2' group is the exactly where a little love can pay back in spades! I'll bet half of them are top performers in disguise, just waiting for a chance to shine!

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