Can You Keep the Best Employees?
In Alberta the job market is heating up. This means that retaining your best staff is as important as finding the best candidates. Employee retention is a hot topic. The most common reason people leave their jobs is lack of motivation and a difficult supervisor/manager, rarely do they leave for money.
During our interviews we ask the job searcher about the qualities their best supervisor demonstrated. The answers usually come down to just a few things. The supervisor listened to me; he/she provided good training, an open door and treated the job searcher with respect. These are all excellent things to keep in mind when dealing with your employees. But what can give you the edge in retaining them?
- One job searcher told me that when he worked in a Call Centre, the supervisor would take the time each day to have a personal conversation with each and every employee on the floor. The job searcher said that sometimes this would take hours out of the supervisor’s day to complete. The result was a department full of happier people and that made for better customer service. Not all of us can take the kind of time out of our day to do this. But make a personal connection with your employees. At the very least it shows that you care about them and what is happening with their life both home and work related. This allows you to get ahead of issues that may pop up.
- Most everyone enjoys learning new things, whether it is a new card game or new aspects to the job, we all thrive with that challenge. Challenge your employees to increase their knowledge. Allow them to take courses that will help them with new software programs, work specific courses or legislation that the company has to deal with. Whatever it may be that will give them the opportunity to grow into their job and perhaps move into more challenging roles.
- Show appreciation for a job well done. There are many ways to do this; one of the most effective is so simple, yet so rarely done. A pat on the back, say thank you and let others in the company know that this employee has done a great job! Positive re-enforcement goes a long way, not only with the person receiving it but with others around them.
- If you would like something new and exciting, start a rewards program! Just like your local supermarket, reward your employee’s points for specific performance. Allow them to collect the points for different types of rewards, such as lunch, an afternoon off, a particular gift. Be creative; come up with things that your employees will embrace.
- Last but not least is to show a true succession plan. Succession plans should also include identifying mentors for the employees to help them succeed. Employees who can see a way to move into supervisory/management roles are usually more engaged. More engaged employees are not usually going to leave the company for other roles.
Retaining staff is not just about keeping up morale it is a sound business decision. With the cost of replacing a top performing employee estimated between $15,000 – $30,000, what can it hurt to spend a little time and money to make sure that your employees are engaged, happy and motivated.