Recruiting great talent takes a lot of time and effort, and so it should. You want the right person for the right job to move your business forward. But the bigger challenge is retaining that talent. When you find the right employee, how do you keep them engaged and encourage them to stay?
Here are five tips to keeping good people.
1. Create a supportive environment where your employees feel like an asset
Outside of salary and benefits, a key driver for many employees is to feel like they are secure in their job and that they are having an impact in their role. To encourage their desire for impactful work, ensure you seek their input and ideas. Feeling like they are making a contribution is a great way to keep your employees engaged and they might share innovative ideas with you that you had not considered.
Make sure you know what motivates different personalities and give them regular battery charges, which is the best way to reignite people.
In uncertain economic times, job security is a big driver to how an employee contributes in the workplace. If an employee is scared they might lose their job, they may start to look elsewhere meaning they keep their ideas to themselves and you lose great talent.
2. Provide opportunities to develop and learn
Allow employees to set their own role-appropriate goals. Ensure they know that you can assist with learning and training if they wish to expand their skill set. Training an employee to learn relevant new skills is a positive for your business because it encourages involvement from staff and adds expertise to your business mix.
Start with excellent communication skills training, as this is the A & O of a positive work environment.
But learning doesn’t always have to be in the form of paid, external training. Mentoring is a great way to create connections between employees and find new ways to do things. Invigorating your business with fresh perspectives from a mix of colleagues keeps employees engaged and can also uncover any challenges or problems before they get too big.
3. Create two-way channels of communication
Ensure your business has easy access to channels for open and resourceful communication to avoid unproductive drama. Actively listen and take on board any feedback along with any opportunity to offer real-time praise and constructive criticism. Focus on direct one-to-one conversations and avoid top-down communications as these can become convoluted and misunderstood. It may help to provide spaces where employees can come together and solve issues without involving management.
4. Streamline your onboarding process
HR industry studies show that around 20 percent of staff turnover occurs within the first 45 days of employment. How do you avoid your new great hire becoming one of the 20 percent? Make it easy.
Starting a new role is a challenging and anxious time – employees want to put their best face forward and must take in a lot of information quickly. Streamline the process. A convoluted onboarding process creates stress, and poor initial training leaves the employee feeling unsure of their role and the requirements. Ensure employees can find information they need quickly and easily. Clearly communicate any documentation you need and make sure they know they can always come to you with questions.
5. Allow top talent to pursue side projects
Employees have skills from all walks of life and there is a high likelihood that their role does not utilise all of their experience. It is important to recognise all the experience your employees have, whether it is directly relevant to the role or not. Allowing an employee to utilise knowledge, experience and skills they already have increases engagement. Additionally, even the best of employees will grow tired of the same tasks each day. There are also plenty who moan, “that’s not my job”, while someone else would love to give it a shot. For the top talent, let them explore a side project outside of their job description. Secondment or even just a short project can actually be rejuvenating.
Ultimately, a good culture, with clear communication channels, a supportive environment and access to training will assist to keep good talent.
About Ilona Vass
Ilona Vass is the Director and Founder of Dancing With the Dragons. Ilona is a licensed and certified practitioner of PCM and LOD systems, and results coach, and has a Certificate in Human Resources and Organisational Development. Dancing with the Dragons assists companies and their leadership teams to develop a passionate and supportive team, ensuring that company culture equals a profitable business.