Employee Retention: Creating Stay Strategies
Time and time again, whether after a speech, on the phone, via e-mail or face-to-face conversations, you tell me the top challenge you face is employee retention—how to keep your greatest employees.
For many of you, it’s time you created a Stay Strategy, a simple yet effective first phase to keeping great employees. Here is how to get started.
Steps for Employee Retention
Step 1: Identify your great employees.
Create a Great Employee Profile (GEP) for your company. Think about the top 10-15% of people in your organization. Where were these employees prior to coming to work for you? What hobbies and/or activities are they involved in outside of work? What kinds of publications do they read? What websites do they most frequently visit? What characteristics and traits do they have in common? Your answers to questions like these will guide your recruiting.
Step 2: Ask your great employees why they stay.
You might be surprised with their answers. Uncover the real reasons they stay with you and make sure those reasons are a vital, visible part of your operation. And never let those reasons go away!
Step 3: Ask your great employees what would make them leave.
Again, you might be surprised. After uncovering those things that would make them bolt out the door, make sure these reasons go away … and fast!
Step 4: Ask your great employees what motivates them.
Many great employees stay with you but for their reasons, not yours or the company’s. It is not difficult to discover what makes them tick—just ask them. Then ensure you have programs in place to address their needs.
Step 5: Ask your great employees what demotivates them.
Far too often great employees leave not because of job demands or new initiatives, but from feeling unappreciated or taken for granted. Find out what really ignites your great employees’ passion and train your supervisors to meet these needs.
Get These Strategies Down First
Does this sound like a “Motivation Primer 101”? Perhaps, but remember—a Stay Strategy need not be complicated or overly burdensome. Only when the above fundamentals are in place should you attempt to develop a more sophisticated Stay Strategy, one that will be resilient to the whims of your great people to suddenly leave.