Companies are on a constant mission to hire and retain top talent. After all, having the right employees will have a major impact on the success of the business. However, with job resignations at an all-time high, and increased staff turnover hitting budgets hard, what can business leaders do to retain their best employees?
Know your culture
We know that happier workers are more productive workers – and creating the right culture will contribute to the overall happiness of staff. Workplaces shouldn’t be somewhere that people dread to be, but rather a place that people actually enjoy spending time in.
Employers looking to create the right culture first need to recognise what motivates staff – and what they value the most. Understanding these key drivers will not only help businesses retain productive employees, but also attract new talent. Having the team involved in creating the right culture and encouraging ongoing feedback will also show employees that they have a channel to share their feedback and that management will act on it.
Pathways to success
Employees tend to remain loyal when they feel they have room to grow, but some companies struggle to provide these clear pathways to success. Providing a clear vision of how employees can develop is vital in order to keep people engaged and on-board. This doesn’t mean everyone should become a manager as soon as they’ve mastered their role, though. Instead, companies should make it clear that there are many different ways to advance. For example, sales or technical staff can continue to learn and increase their specialist knowledge over time, so that they become true experts in the business.
This process begins with understanding and identifying the various strengths that different employees bring to the company. Creating a shared vision of excellence doesn’t have to mean creating clones. Instead, employers should take steps to promote individuality by recognising each employee’s unique skills and abilities.
A sense of purpose
Everyone is driven by a sense of purpose – without it we quickly become demotivated and lose our way. That’s why it’s important that employees feel that they have the opportunity to take on new tasks and challenges. They should also be given clear direction during performance meetings and be regularly updated on their progress.
Aligning performance goals to company values is also key. Staff who feel like they’re contributing to the overall success of the business will be more likely to feel happy any motivated. Providing this sense of purpose is a vital ingredient for retaining the best talent.
Turning managers into leaders
It’s a well-known fact that employees don’t quit their jobs; they quit their managers. Having well-trained managers will therefore go a long way towards retaining the best employees. It’s not enough for managers to just be nice, however; they need to set clear expectations and provide a structure where employees feel they can succeed.
At the most basic level, staff engagement comes from clear communication and strong leadership. It’s therefore essential that businesses are helping managers be the kind of leaders that people want to work for. Managers need to be trained on skills like providing constructive feedback, assessing staff performance and identifying their team’s individual talents. This will help them keep staff engaged and wanting to work for the business.
Staff retention is a priority for every growing business, and putting a strategy in place that takes key employee motivators into account can make this job a lot easier. Making sure that staff are engaged in their role, whilst also providing clear career progression, will ultimately enable the business to keep hold of their best people.
Aliya Vigor-Robertson is co-founder at JourneyHR.