StrategyDriven Talent Management Article

Top Ways to Retain Employees

StrategyDriven Talent Management ArticleWhether you’re the manager of your department or the CEO of a company, it’s so important to make sure you retain the attention and engagement of your employees. When your employees go through the hiring process, they’ve proven themselves to be the best men and women for the jobs your company offers. In order for the company to do well, there needs to be a level of continuity and consistency in the workflow. One of the best ways to make sure this happens is through retaining top talent. There are a few strategies to implement in order to make sure your company holds on to its best employees and attracts more awesome and talented employees in the future.

1. Mentorship
Partner new team members with more experienced employees. It’s so important to foster an environment of mentorship. The experienced employees can teach the newer ones the ropes of the company. There’s also a level of openness regarding how to improve and facilitate a better workflow. When the company implements a mentorship system within the workplace, it takes away the vibes of competition and backbiting. Everyone is in the room with the same goal: to make the company more money and win. When everyone is on one accord, the results can be truly divine.

2. Ownership
Take note of the strengths of your employees. If they’re not already exercising them in some way, give them opportunities to thrive. Sure, there is a level of initiative employees need to take. However, as the leader, it’s important for you to make it clear that you’re open to your employees taking on new roles, growing and improving company strategies. There are many employees that have lots of ideas, but have bosses with large egos. Don’t let ego get in the way of an employee’s ability to offer more to the company.

3. Gold Stars/Incentives
Money is a major motivator, but it’s not the only one. Bonuses are amazing for helping employees stick around. An upgrade to the company benefits package, weekly lunches and telecommuting are a few of the tricks to get good employees to stick around. If the work environment is conducive to their personal and professional happiness in a very tangible way, it’ll be hard to get them to leave.

4. Accountability
It can be really detrimental to a company when an employee decides to quit abruptly. If they’re a major part of the team, their presence is essential. Design an environment where members of the team are able to check in with one another and remain accountable to each other. This will foster a level of transparency. If a person is deeply unhappy in their work, that’ll come across when they interact with other employees. Keeping one another accountable will help the company become stronger as they’ve been bonded together.

These are a few of the best ways to make sure your company holds on to the best of the best. As you progress and tweak the process, keep an ear to the ground. You’ll want feedback to learn how you can improve as the head of the team. As you gain advice, listen to it and implement the most effective practices. A company doesn’t become a well-oiled machine overnight. In many cases, it takes years of mistakes and fine-tuning. Lean in and embrace the process because the company will be better as a result of it.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article

Five Tips to Recruit and Manage a Global Project Team

To compete in global markets, you need global talent. The demands of a customer in China diverge widely from those of a customer in Canada. In this increasingly connected world, you can’t limit your recruitment to local markets.

How exactly can you adopt a global recruitment strategy? Once recruited, how do you effectively manage an international team? This article will answer these questions and more below.

1. Go Beyond Resumes

The traditional resume often fails when hiring internationally. Variations in local work and education standards can make it difficult to develop an evaluation matrix for shortlisting international candidates.

As an antidote, look beyond resumes and consider more standard signifiers of expertise. Internationally recognized certifications, standardized test scores, and even skill-based competitions can be a worthy replacement to resumes.

For example, if you’re hiring for a project management position, you might prioritize the PMP certification over a resume. If you’re hiring for technical talent, a team-based competition board like Kaggle can help.

2. Consider Local Talent Concerns When Making Offers

As any experienced international recruiter will tell you, local talent priorities and concerns vary widely across regions and geographies. For example, a MetLife survey found that more workers in China considered a higher salary as a reason to stay in a company. In India, higher benefits trumped a higher salary when it comes to employee needs.

Your goal should be to consider the expectations of local talent and design an attractive package. Your offer should align with the cultural practices, workplace expectations, and established employment trends in the region.

3. Invest in Team Building

Just because a team is working remotely from locations across the globe doesn’t mean that you can eschew team building. In fact, in the absence of a shared space or common culture, investing in team building activities becomes even more important.

Here are a few pointers for team building in global teams:

  • Respect cultural beliefs: Any team building activity you undertake should take cognizance of cultural beliefs of each team member. Get individual team members to buy into any activity before recommending it to the rest of the group. Make sure that team members don’t feel pressured into participating in any activity they are uncomfortable with.
  • Focus on collaborative digital activities: If your team is remote, your team building should revolve around collaborative digital activities. Think of multiplayer games, digital treasure hunts, etc. Pick activities that reward teamwork instead of skill (such as team-based strategy games instead of action games).
  • Encourage non-work collaboration: For a team to thrive, team members should have something in common that goes beyond their work responsibilities. Encourage team members to meet, converse, and collaborate on non-work activities. Create dedicated communication channels where people can exchange ideas and have conversations without the pressure of work.

4. Adopt Managerial Practices that Align with Cultural Expectations

To manage a multicultural team built across geographical boundaries, you have to eschew standard managerial practices. Instead, you have to accept, understand, and adopt cultural differences in your management approach.

A few things you should consciously look out for are:

  • Leadership approach: Leadership styles vary greatly across cultures. Some cultures appreciate a more collaborative approach to leadership, while others will prefer a more distant and forceful leader. Understand the cultural approach to leadership for all your team members and incorporate it into your management practices.
  • Time: How people approach time is also variables across cultures. Some cultures consider deadlines to be a hard stop in the work process. Others might see it just as a guide. If the people on your team come from cultures where time is seen as a flexible concept, change your management approach accordingly.
  • Responsibilities: In some cultures, speaking out and raising your hand to take on responsibilities is encouraged. In others, it is considered rude. As a manager in a multicultural team, you’ll have to understand each team member’s approach to responsibilities and change your expectations accordingly.

5. Adopt Practical Solutions to Time Zone Conflicts

If you’re managing a global, distributed team, one of your biggest problems will be dealing with time zone conflicts. The farther apart your team members are, the harder this challenge.

Some things you should consider are:

  • Changing meeting schedules: A fixed meeting schedule can often inconvenience team members located in different time zones. For instance, if you have early morning weekly meetings (by EST), a team member based in Australia will have to be up late at night to attend them. Fix this problem by changing meeting schedules regularly so all project team members feel that their needs are being met.
  • Automate messaging: To get around the problem of time zones, automate messaging as much as possible. For instance, instead of sending a deadline reminder manually, you can instruct your project management tool to send one automatically as per the task assignee’s local time zone. This can save you tons of micromanagement.

Recruiting people from a global talent pool and managing them effectively is one of the biggest challenges for modern organizations. Getting it right can improve your competitiveness and help you win against bigger, but less diverse businesses.

Have you ever managed a global team? What were your biggest challenges? Share your experience in the comments below!

About the Author

Puranjay is a marketing leader and founder of GrowthPub, a content-focused marketing agency that helps SaaS startups scale their digital presence. He also blogs at

Teching Your Way To Better Employees

Being an employer can be a tough job for a lot of people. In this sort of role, it can be very easy to be overly compassionate, giving people much more than you can afford. Likewise, though, some people are much too strict to be a good boss. Sat in between these two issues is a balance which few manage to reach. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some subtle ways to watch over your workers, while also looking for ways to make their work easier. This may involve a little bit of spying, but this will be worth it if you’re able to make a difference.

Monitoring (Digital): Keeping an eye on the work which people are doing will be very hard without the right systems in place to handle it for you. Options like Excel used to be the only way to do this, and you would have to create your own detailed spreadsheets if you wanted to do properly. Nowadays, tools like Asana take away this work, giving you a much easier platform to handle your work from. As long as everyone keeps something like this up to date, it should be nice and easy to keep track of their work. This is particularly good for digital companies with very little work outside of computers.

Monitoring (Physical): In some cases, the work your employees will be doing won’t be able to be tracked digitally, and you might need a physical tool to help with your monitoring. Though it may seem a little secretive, one of the best ways to do this is through the tools on a site like Sentel Tech. Giving you the power to watch over work without being noticed, this is a great way to see your employees working. More importantly, though, this will also help you spot any issues they are having at the same time.

Finding Solutions: Once you have an idea of the issues which could be floating around in your business, it will be time to find some solutions to them. For example, if a worker seems restless towards the end of their shift, and it’s making their work hard, giving them an additional five minute break each day would be worth the benefits it could bring. Most employees will work as hard as they feel their job is worth to them. If you’re able to improve their work, they will feel more valued, and will often work much harder as a result. A lot of the time, the issues your employees will have will be directly related to your company, giving you the chance to fix them.

Hopefully, with all of this in mind, it should start to get a lot easier to work your employees into something much better. Most of the time, employers have a lot more power in this area than they think. Simple changes to your company, like better facilities or computers, will make a big difference to the people having to use them everyday.

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article

Empower Your Employees: How to Encourage Staff to Take Pride in the Workplace

Every business owner wants to create a more productive, passionate and focused workplace, but it can seem easier said than done. However, it doesn’t need to be. All you need to do is encourage staff to take pride in the workplace with a few key steps.

Communicate the Company Vision and Values

Provide your members of staff with a sense of purpose and direction to instill more pride in their position. It can be difficult for your employees to feel proud of their role if they do not understand how it affects others. Continually try to communicate the company’s vision and values to your staff, and detail what makes their role so integral to the business.

Encourage Staff to Learn More About Every Department

There will likely be many talented people on your payroll, who each help your business grow every day. Showcase the talent and passion within the company by encouraging staff to learn more about different departments, rather than them remaining inside the comfort of their cubicle and department.

By doing so, they’ll learn more about the company operations, as well as the hard work and dedication different employees’ display to achieve optimum results for the business. Your staff will gain a great understanding of the inner workings of the business, which can make them feel proud to work for the brand.

It will also educate your employees on how the quality of their work can affect other departments across the business, so they will continually strive to support their colleagues with the highest quality projects and pieces.

Ensure Employees Receive Regular Feedback

Don’t allow standards to slip or passion to diminish. Keep morale and productivity high by ensuring your management team provides regular feedback to your staff. It will enable employees to make the necessary improvements in real time. Don’t settle for annual or bi-annual reviews, which will allow poor habits to develop gradually. Encourage managers to perform monthly feedback sessions to review performances, offer advice, and set monthly expectations.

Consider Creative Rewards for Your Company’s Highest Achievers

A paycheck will not be enough to keep your employees happy and motivated in their job. They also need rewards and recognition to remain content and passionate about both the brand and their position. If you don’t look for ways to recognize your top talent, you could risk them leaving the business for your competitors.

You must, therefore, look for creative ways to reward the company’s high achievers. For example, you could send then a positive email or text message for a job well done, or you could even congratulate them for a successful project within the company newsletter.

There is also an option to offer formal rewards, such as a financial bonus or day off work. You could even choose to host a recognition ceremony to show your employees you appreciate their efforts, and you could present them with Custom Challenge Coins to instill a sense of pride in the workplace, and it will also remind them of how much you appreciate their dedication, talent and hard work every day.

Maintain a Clutter-Free Space

Did you know the average office worker spends approximately 1.5 hours a day looking for something at work? That equates to six weeks of the year. Create a clutter-free space to create a more productive environment for everyone, and a clean environment will also encourage employees to take pride in maintaining a hygienic workspace. Encourage your staff to clean their workspaces and common spaces routinely, and request they look for ways to regularly reduce mess to create a cleaner environment for everyone.

Find Out What Inspires Your Team

Many managers and business owners believe they understand what inspires their staff, but the reality might be very different. Rather than guessing what motivates your team and what makes them feel proud of their role, simply ask them the question. You can either ask employees directly or request they submit their answers anonymously, which will allow them to speak openly and honestly. As a result, you can create a workplace that continually motivates and inspires your staff, which can make them feel empowered within their role.

Offer Continuous Education

Education should not be made available for just inexperienced or underperforming members of staff. Continuous education could be the key to increasing your employees’ knowledge, improving their skill set and helping them to learn more about the current trends within the industry. For instance, continuous education allows accountants and bankers to remain up-to-date with the latest regulations.

Allow Staff to Form Friendships

Teamwork makes the dream work, right? That’s why you must proactively encourage staff to form friendships both inside and outside of work. The people they work with will determine their happiness within the business. Create a sense of pride and camaraderie in the workplace by offering team building activities, which will bring your employees together and have a little fun outside of the office. It’s a great way for people to get to know one another while working together to accomplish a goal, which could transfer to the office.

Give Pep Talks to Struggling Employees

Employees struggling with a task or project might suffer from low morale, and they might start doubting their ability. Keep negative thinking at bay by pulling a member of staff aside to give them a much-needed pep talk, which might be all it takes to inspire your staff to tick the task off their list efficiently. For example, highlight the small improvements they have made, and comment on their past accomplishments, which will support positive thinking while proving they work for a caring employer.

Expand Their Roles

Seasoned employees may know their roles like the back of their hand. A lack of challenges could ultimately lead to a lack of engagement and pride in their position. Foster a sense of engagement by providing staff with new responsibilities, which will challenge their mind and expand their skillset, so they’ll feel happier about their role and the company.

How to Help Employees Be More Productive

When a business is looking to increase productivity, there are several routes they can take. Typically, it requires lots of changes rather than one big massive change in the workplace. It’s the idea that a number of small adjustments can add up and really have a big impact on the overall productivity. One area that shouldn’t be overlooked or marginalized is your employees. When you give them the tools and skills they need to be productive, the entire business will flourish.

So, what are the tools and skills needed? How can you help your employees to be their most productive? Here are some tips and information that you can use.

Limit the Amount of Stress

While there are going to be jobs that naturally come with stress, many can limit the amount of stress and pressure on employees. As Capital Wired discusses in a recent article seen here, people have enough stress to worry about nowadays. Coming into work and having more stress piled on isn’t going to help them be more productive or “light a fire” under them. Instead, it will cause them to become flustered, which can lead to mistakes and errors.

Obviously, there are deadlines and workplace pressures that can’t be avoided, but keeping things organized, prioritizing tasks, and creating a positive environment that motivates employees tends to get much better results.

Provide Employees with Support

In order to succeed, employees need the proper support, and by support, we mean adequate and sometimes on-going training, the time required to complete tasks, a budget, and other staff to work with. This support will allow employees to reach their maximum productivity.

Proper Technology and Tools

There is also the functional aspect of being productive. It’s very hard for employees to be productive if they don’t have the right software, tools, and technology at their fingertips. Investing in the latest technology is an investment that your employees and, therefore, your company will benefit from.

Encourage Employees to Share Ideas and Thoughts

Because your employees are the ones who are actually doing the job and seeing the challenges on a daily basis, it’s important they feel welcome to talk to you and share thoughts and ideas. They may have suggestions on how a process can work more efficiently, they may seem issues that aren’t clear to you, and they will have a better idea of what solutions will work best.

You need to know if they feel they can’t do their job, and why it is that they feel that way. Employees shouldn’t feel scared or apprehensive about approaching you with concerns and criticism.

Give Employees the Permission to Take Breaks and Walk Away

Sometimes, work can get overwhelming and once that happens employees will start to suffer, which affects the job they are doing. As an employer, it’s up to you to recognize that employees need to step away sometimes, take a break, and take that time to decompress. They can come back refreshed and clear, ready to take on their work with enthusiasm. Stepping away from their desk when they need that break shouldn’t be looked down on.

Each of these tips will help you to create a workplace environment that encourages and facilities productivity.