In the past, business culture was very different. Companies pretty much told their employees what to do, and they got on with it, without really asking any serious questions. But with falling unemployment and changing expectations, that’s all gone out the window. Now firms have to give their employees many reasons to stay. Otherwise, they’ll look for opportunities elsewhere.
You can listen to consultants all day long, telling you what you should do to reduce employee turnover. But the easiest way to encourage people to stay is to ask them yourself.
When you do, here’s what they say:
Opportunities For Progression
Money today is great. But employees also want the promise of more money in the future. Often, this idea is more compelling than receiving a bonus in the here and now. People want to feel like their lives are going somewhere. They don’t want to get stuck on an eternal treadmill, doing the same things every day, without end. They need a sense that they’re progressing. They want recognition in their communities.
If you want to keep employees, therefore, you should create an explicit schedule for their careers. Make it clear what you expect from them and then make opportunities available once they gain sufficient experience and expertise.
Recognition For Their Work
Some people work for money and nothing else. But a lot of people feel like they’re part of a large social enterprise and expect recognition from their superiors. For them, work isn’t just a means of making money or achieving goals. It’s also about getting some much-needed affirmation.
If you’re a natural boss, you may struggle to see the importance of this. They already get paid, so why do they also need parenting? It seems weird. Sometimes, though, you have to ignore your instinct and spend a bit of time telling your employees you appreciate them. It’s the equivalent of the teacher giving the student a gold star.
Paychecks are great. But ultimately, they lose their appeal. Sometimes, they can become a source of resentment. Employees often come to believe that you’re giving them too little for the work they do.
Corporate gifts for employees, however, can sweeten the deal somewhat. With these, you can show your appreciation without having to go through the rigmarole of a salary renegotiation. For workers, it feels like Christmas.
Offer Flexible Hours
If there’s one thing that workers want more than anything, it is freedom over how they use their time. Not everyone wants to be in the office on weekdays. Some people find it more convenient to come in on the weekend and get their work done then.
Create a system that allows people to work flexibly, where possible. You could allocate a certain number of flexi-hours per week if you need colleagues to be in the office together at certain times.