Retention of talent and employee engagement remains top of mind for employers today. Closely related to these issues are an ever-changing work environment and decreasing employee loyalty. Employees no longer expect to stay at an organization for any length of time. This becomes particularly true when those employees “earn” expanded duties because of good work habits and a shrinking bottom line.
Understanding the New Norm
While the idea of fewer people doing more work is nothing new, it’s at a tipping point where it’s significantly coloring employee engagement and employee retention. In extremes such as this, a measure of perspective can be beneficial. Let’s begin with the mindset of an employer. If you are responsible for running an organization, there’s a good chance you’re tasked with maintaining a smart and efficiently run organization, which often translates into lean operations and a less-is-more attitude.
These measures help keep the lights on but from the perspective of employees, these decisions directly compromise the loyalty of those handling the day-to-day work, driving them to find alternative employment.
Why Good Employees Leave
Crushing Work Load – Good employees have the ability do wonders in an 8-hour day. Therefore, the theory goes; why not shift additional work to these individuals, particularly if they show their versatility in a number of areas? While it’s important to recognize productivity and good work skills, this should not become a punishment. Without reinforcements, a good worker will quickly become burnt out and leave for a less-demanding workplace.
Rising Expectations – Good employees rise to a challenge. That’s probably what attracted you to hire them in the first place. Regularly crushing goals deserves recognition in the form of a raise, a reward or public recognition. Without these, it becomes easy to question why they should continue to work so hard for a business that doesn’t care.
Explain the Why – Perspective is everything. If employees don’t understand why cuts occur or programs or staffing remain unfunded, there’s a good chance they’ll assume the reason is about cutting costs. Without any explanation, it’s easy to assume where employer priorities lie and where employees rank on that list.
Build and Retain Trust – Transparency is one of the most important qualities in relationships. A business is not exempt from this. Employees want to work for employers whose qualities match their own. Merely providing lip service to things that are important to employees is a good way to lose trust and remind them of a reason to find a better match.
Play to Strengths – A job role is two-dimensional, but the person doing the role is a dynamic individual who brings additional skills, creativity and abilities to the role. Rather than keeping someone penned into a job role, look at this as an opportunity to challenge the person and bring a side benefit to the business. There’s a good chance they already bring far more to a role, it’s just not recognized the way it should be.
Instead of gearing up for the expensive and time-consuming process of hiring, why not look deeper into currently employed staff? There’s an excellent chance you have untapped resources that will not only help the bottom line but will keep those gems working for you.
This article is brought to you by Staffing Kansas City, a full-service Kansas City employment agency that provides contract-to-hire, direct hire and temporary employment placement services.