It’s been more than two years of unrelenting crises.
Socially, economically, and personally we have all struggled.
Many of us were forced into remote work situations that left us disconnected from our peers and friends.
That lack of real connection is one of the reasons for the “Great Resignation.” In fact, according to PWC, 1 in 5 plan on leaving their jobs in the next 12 months!
Many companies are treating this in the only way they know how – try throwing more money at their talent.
But there will always be someone willing to pay more. So, this strategy can’t work as a long-term retention policy.
Today’s workforce is more concerned about quality-of-life issues and balance. And organizations need to recognize this fact.
For years we have talked about how to lead Millennials – who seek a variety of experiences. Rather than stay with the same company, basically doing the same kind of work, they seek new experiences in a new environment. They seek experiences that align with their interests, and keep their day-to-day fresh and interesting.
Now it’s not just Millennials – it’s everyone. Our collective perspective on work has changed.
7 Steps to Retain Top Talent
Studies show that anywhere from a third to nearly one-half of employees consider themselves ‘job seekers’. Yes, your top talent are also looking. And, you can’t afford to lose them.
What can you do to keep them attracted to and engaged within your organization? Following are 7 steps you can take right now to make sure your workplace is one where top talent can say they ‘love to work and feel valued.”
- Connect employees to your purpose – What does your organization stand for? Is your purpose to authentically serve customers or is more focus given to serving the bottom line, at all costs? Ensure your mission and values authentically connect to making a difference in the lives of your customers, and that employees have an understanding of the importance of their role in fulfilling your purpose.
- Develop flexible work options – We’ve gotten used to remote and hybrid work situations. And a lot of us like them. Flexibility is key. Work/life balance is important for a number of reasons. For over two years you’ve trusted your employees to connect from anywhere. And a lot of people report being much more productive than they were in the office. If you trusted them before – continue with that trust. They’ve earned it. Carefully consider the requirements for the role and the team’s deliverables. Partner to identify and experiment with possible solutions.
- Provide tools to help employees work more productively – The most important expectation from your employees is that they get the job done and take care of customers. Expecting employees to work extended hours or to be connected on their personal time does not mean that more work is getting done. Provide tools to help employees work smarter when they’re on the clock. Beef up your technology. Get rid of the bureaucracy by eliminating procedures and policies that slow things down.
- Create a ‘community’ environment – We are social beings. We thrive in environments where we can connect on a more personal level with people across the organization. Create an environment where informal connections can occur, and where teams can work more collaboratively.
- Offer opportunities to develop and grow – Keep your work interesting by encouraging your top talent to develop new skills. Offer professional development programs for employees at all levels of the company. Encourage formal and informal mentoring partnerships. Invest in executive coaching to support top talent in honing their leadership skills. And, develop a structure for career progression that balances being in a role long enough to gain solid experience and make an impact, without employees feeling ‘stuck’.
- Provide opportunities to give back – Companies that have a social conscience and are engaged in giving back in their communities tend to get more respect from employees. Offer a variety of opportunities for employees to get involved on your behalf, either through company sponsored service events, or on an individual level.
- Lead authentically – Creating a culture where employees are inspired to commit requires authentic, resilient, adaptable leadership. Truly care for your employees’ well-being so that partnerships are formed at all levels of the organization in building a culture where ‘employees love to work and feel valued.’
If you follow these strategies, you will foster loyalty and improve your overall retention. Customize these strategies for the talent currently within your organization and for the talent you’re looking to attract. The investment in these ideas is small compared to the benefits you’ll experience as a result.