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  • Michael Coulthard

15 Ways to Retain Your Employees...

Do you have an employee turnover problem?

If employee retention is your goal, then it’s important to provide adequate rest periods for them. This will help reduce stress and sick days.

Almost 70% of organisations report that staff turnover has a negative financial impact due to the cost of recruiting, hiring, and training replacement employees as well as the additional work of current employees that is required until the organisation can fill the vacancy.

Everything considered, it is estimated that a lost employee can cost 6 to 9 months of that employee’s salary on average. There’s a clear need for employee retention strategies.

Employee turnover and staff retention is a major problem, and there are many factors to consider, including generational factors, economy, workplace changes and culture etc.


Learning the following actionable 15 employee retention strategies will help you reduce employee turnover and retain the talent you already have. But first, let’s preface the following retention strategies with the most important principle of all that in order to retain and engage your employees, you must truly care about them.

No strategy will overcome a lack of empathy or appreciation for your employees!


We have put together a list of detailed of strategies that are designed to improve employee retention in the workplace. They consist of the following:


1. Provide More Positive Feedback

We all know that employees need feedback to improve and to do their best work, both positive and constructive! Positive feedback should be given frequently as a motivator and to give the determination they need to do their best work. But constructive and corrective feedback is also important, particularly when there’s an urgent issue that needs to resolved.

Be more aware of how many negative comments you are making to your employees in relation to positive comments.

Move the ratio towards six positive comments for every negative one.


2. Encourage Creativity

Although many companies say they value creativity, they don’t necessarily have anything in place to support it. Google, for example, has a 20% program in which their employees are given the opportunity to work on side projects that interest them. You could:

  • Incentivise it. If you’re going to encourage suggestions, take them seriously. Recognize and incentivise employees that contribute in a tangible way.

  • Provide an outlet. Not all employees are going to want to be named or recognised for their ideas. Leaders should create opportunities for both public and private contributions or feedback.

  • Set up innovation teams that are tasked with coming up with ideas on a specific topic.

  • Demonstrate the value you place on creativity by encouraging risk-taking.

  • Hire a variety of different people - creativity will not come from a group of people that all think alike.

  • Have fun and create a positive working environment where creativity and spontaneity can occur.


3. Respect in the Workplace

More than ever before, people are looking for respect at their jobs. They don’t want to feel devalued or unimportant within an organisation, which can result from a lack of respect.

Does your workplace value respect as highly as workers do?

A culture of respect can be fostered by implementing many of the strategies suggested on this list, including feedback, recognition, encouraging creativity, collaboration etc.


4. Give Your Employees an Opportunity to Grow

Many companies promote people from outside of the organisation, and don’t offer ongoing training and education for their workers. Because there is no way to advance or improve, employees become disillusioned in their roles, and are less likely to stay. When there is a clearly laid-out path for advancement, your employees will feel like they are a critical part of the company’s success.


By promoting from within and implementing a training program, or by leveraging outside resources and tools (such as workshops, books, online courses and videos, etc.), you can create a powerful incentive for your team members to stay over the long haul.

Employees see these initiatives as an investment in *their* future.


5. Earn the Trust of Your Employees

Employees perform better when they trust leadership and management. They are more likely to achieve the goals that are set for them when they believe and trust the person that’s getting them to do the work.

46% of employees stated that a lack of transparent leadership communication is driving them to seek new employment. Meanwhile, 79% of highly engaged employees have trust and confidence in their leaders. If you haven’t implemented an employee engagement program, there’s a good chance they don’t trust you as much as you think they do.


As you’re looking to create more trust with your employees, it will be necessary to: build personal connections, emphasize honesty and transparency, motivate your team members, give credit, and shoulder blame, avoid favouritism, and demonstrate competence in your work.


6. Encourage Your Employees to Give You Feedback

It’s one thing to give feedback to your employees, but you must also accept feedback from them. When workers don’t feel like their thoughts are being heard, they assume the company has no interest in improving or pursuing worthy ideas.

Many employees have a tendency of thinking that nothing will change, even if they do propose something new. Remember – there needs to be opportunities for both public and private feedback, and it never hurts to thank those who offer their suggestions. Create a culture where staff members feel comfortable offering their thoughts.


7. Include Your Employees

No one wants to feel excluded in an organization they are a part of. A new hire wants to feel like they were hired for a reason, and that they are playing a key role in helping the business achieve its objectives.

Encourage inclusion, diversity, development planning, and leadership development in their culture were 3.8 times more likely to be able to coach people for improved performance, more able to deal with personnel performance problems, and more likely to identify and build leaders.


From hiring and leadership assessment to professional development and performance management, you will need to take a top-down approach to a culture of inclusion, and there are no shortcuts to getting there.


8. Challenge Your Employees in a Balanced Way

Doing the same thing day in and day out can lead to boredom and apathy. On the other hand, getting your employees to complete difficult projects or jump through too many hoops could make them feel demoralised about their future in the company. Finding the balance between challenge and support is rarely easy. This is because every employee is different, and what one might find rewarding, another might find tedious and too complex.

You should express belief in your employees.

Leaders are in a position of authority, and when they express the potential they see in them, their belief in self grows. To demonstrate this, you could:

  • Push people out of their comfort zone and give them a chance to take a risk.

  • Seeing failure as a learning opportunity - process failure together by learning from it.

  • Encourage a growth mindset and reward effort – not just talent and brains.


9. Encourage A Healthy Work-Life Balance

Many organisations have high expectations for their employees. But for employees, this can mean less time devoted to personal care, leisure activities, and family. When your team members are well-rested and have adequate time to care for themselves and their families, they will also perform better at work.


Establishing regular work hours, policies for working on weekends, or work-from-home programs can offer your team members the flexibility they need to bring their best to work every single day.


10. Connect with Your Team

Part of employee engagement and enablement is taking time to connect with your people, and we’ve already seen how employee engagement can have a dramatic impact on the effectiveness of your company.

When your workforce feels connected, it gives them purpose. It helps them carve out a niche within their department or team, and it helps them see how they are contributing to big-picture objectives.


The secret to unlocking this unlimited source of energy for your company is to build and strengthen the bonds between you and your employees. When you trust and respect your people – and really connect with them – they will respond with commitment and enthusiasm.

You can bring out the best in your workforce by allowing them to express their ideas, recognizing their contribution, empowering them with the tools and information they need, giving them opportunities to grow, as detailed earlier.


11. Offer a Competitive Base Salary or Hourly Wage

Your employees want to feel like the effort they put into work is worth their time. When it comes to employee retention, money isn’t everything, but offering a competitive wage can help your people feel like their work and time is valued.


Regardless of a person’s field, she wants to know her compensation is competitive with what others who perform similar work are earning. Salaries need not be the highest in your area but should be among the top. Paying low salaries means top people will leave and low performer will take their jobs.


12. Avoid Sudden Changes in the Workplace

Change may be inevitable, but it can also be very stressful. You may need to introduce new initiatives and systems in your company to keep up with growth or to strengthen quality assurance. But forcing too much change too soon can affect employee retention.

You should think of your employees as strong people, capable of adapting as necessary. But without ongoing communication – especially with regards to the status of their job – your workers can begin to feel fearful for their future in the company.

Many companies have found that introducing one change at a time is more manageable for workers than many changes at once. Instead of trying to implement broad, sweeping changes, it would be wise to go about it gradually.


13. Create a Clean & Safe Environment for Your Employees

Dirtiness and clutter is distracting. And if people sense that danger is near, they’re going to have a hard time focusing on the work they need to do.

Since your employees will be spending at least one-third of any given day in the workplace, if not longer, it’s important to create and maintain a comfortable working environment.

To achieve this end, you may need to carry out risk assessment to identify potential hazards and dangers in the workplace. You may also want to update your health and safety policies and put additional processes and procedures in place to ensure a safe working environment.

And although we are talking about employee retention strategies here, it may also be necessary to let go of employees that are harassing, causing distractions, or not cooperating. This will be for the better of all involved – ensure the comfort of the many over the few.


14. Give Your Employees the Tools They Need to Succeed

If you’re going to set goals for your workers, you need to give them the tools, resources, and information they need to succeed. All too often, employees are left to their own devices without any direction or guidance. Is it any wonder they fail to hit a target they cannot even see?

A team is only as strong as its weakest link, but the number of business leaders choosing to ignore this sentiment is staggering, as they are more concerned with their own development and less so with their employees. Not an intelligent move.

If you want to help your employees succeed, you need to be in regular communication with them, asking them specifically about the project they’re working on, and if there’s anything you can help them with to bring it to completion. You need to be willing to share your knowledge, and to mentor and guide them.


15. Provide Adequate Rest Periods for Your Employes one thing to support an employee that’s driven and wants to make a significant contribution to the company. But for every determined and ambitious employee, there are many others that would collapse under the pressure of stress and overwork.

If employee retention is your goal, then it’s important to provide adequate rest periods for them. This will help reduce stress and sick days.


If you have any questions or comments on this Blog post, please do not hesitate to contact us

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