The latest news and advice from our recruitment experts.
When you look at the ‘nitty-gritty’ of what makes a company successful, more often than not, you will find that it is actually the work of individuals with immense talent, in their respective fields of expertise that contribute to this. The question remains, how do you as an employer, ensure that you are able to cement future employment for that individual, harvesting their talent?
This week we delve into how to successfully retain top talent within your business.
No manager likes to be presented with a resignation letter, particularly from a star player. It’s when you don’t see it coming, that it feels like a slap in the face, leaving you with a raft of questions such as; “why is he/she leaving?”, “what caused this to happen?”, “how are we going to replace him/her?”, “did I not pay her enough/give her enough benefits?” Questions such as these will cross the mind of any employer who is faced with adversity of losing their top talent.
Funny enough, the answers to the questions posed above, are not actually the deciding factors for someone thinking about resigning. Yes, they may have a part to play, but ultimately they are glazed over by the employee if they are generally dissatisfied in their role. Proving that what employees are actually looking for, first and foremost, is job satisfaction.
Whilst we say that our jobs don’t dictate our lives, the reality is that we will work anywhere between 40 - 60 hours per week – which is a third of our week solely dedicated to work. Whilst we bestow so much of our time to one cause, it’s no surprise that job satisfaction is first and foremost of what many employees are looking for. Rosemary Haefner’s, Vice President of Human Resources at CareerBuilder, researched into the ‘needs’ and ‘wants’ of employees, and revealed that employees “want to be challenged; they want to contribute to something meaningful and they want to be able to have a good work-life balance”.
So how does an employer do this?
Create an environment that makes your employees feel like they’re an asset to the business. It would be hard to commit and excel to a task 110%, if no adequate praise is given. Feeling like an asset to any business, rather than just another overhead or cost, is essential to the employee’s feelings of self-worth and appreciation. “Employees want to feel valued”, says Haefner. In turn, this demonstrates that one of the most essential things you can do as an employer is to value those that work for you, and the talent that they bring to your business.
One way an employer can do this, is by creating an environment that is based on trust and security, where managers and their staff take time to engage with each other. By showing a general interest to the employees contribution to the business, is the basis of a strong foundation for a solid employee/employer relationship.
Be an inspiring leader to your employees.
No one wants to be that person sitting within those same four walls, day-in and day-out, counting the dots, going nowhere, and with nothing to strive or work towards. As an employer, one of the most rewarding things you can do for your employees, is to implement a goal setting structure with the view of the employee bettering themselves. This should involve a series of strategic steps that require time and effort from both the company and the employee, so both parties have an equal role to share in achieving success.
We live in a society that wants almost instant gratification, therefore the goals set should be clear, concise, and most importantly achievable. Having to review and reset goals on a regular basis allows for accountability and a more regular sense of achievement. The idea of having a massive overarching goal that you’re always ‘grinding’ away at, becomes more of a chore rather than an accomplishment.
As individuals, we are always striving to be a better version of ourselves, and this most certainly includes within our working life as well.
As a result of goal setting, this may require your employee(s) to undertake further education to achieve this. An employee’s job is not limited to their regular hours (be that 9 - 5 or otherwise). If you have an employee who is eager to take part in additional study or tuition, you should definitely welcome and embrace this. Although it may be seen as (or mean) time away from the office – or an additional cost to the business, this is the complete opposite. This is an investment in the future of your company.
Communication is the key to most areas of life; so be open, listen to new ideas, and reach out to your top talent to hear their suggestions, especially when it comes to any problem solving within the business. For those that you do consider as your top talent, keep the lines of communication open, keep them in the loop with anything topical within the company, as with any future goal setting, and also the overall direction for the company. When channels are open, and are honest and transparent, you will find clear synergies that will give a balance to the employer/employee relationship.
Recognition for work that is successful is imperative to any employee’s job fulfilment, something as simple as showing gratitude via email or a five minute meeting will do wonders for their pride and self-esteem. When an employee feels undervalued or unacknowledged they may look to an alternative solution for employment, where they believe their skills and talents will be appreciated more. Similar with constructive criticism, both are seen as an imperative part to an employee’s growth in the business.
Feedback should be sincere, as Top Talent are smarter enough to decipher between what is real and what is not.
Top performing talent love to be presented with challenges that require them to draw on multiple resources, feeling sedentary in their role will only create a sense of boredom, frustration and lack of enthusiasm towards a once exciting task(s). So, change it up! Share responsibility! Don’t micro-manage those who work for you. Let the top performing talent within your business experiment with their innovative ideas, as you never know where it may lead!
Realistically, after you put any amount of time, effort, resources and investment into hiring the best employees possible for your business, you want to retain their talent for as long as possible.
Taking into consideration the five points above, are you doing the best you can to retain your top talent?