How Effective is Your Employee
Retention of competent workers has not been too much of a problem over the past few years. During the go-go years of the late 1990s, holding onto good people was a real challenge. There were all sorts of jobs available; people could pick and choose where they wanted to work. Recruiting and retention were serious problems for employers when every other employer in town seemed to want to hire the same people.
When the economy slowed, so did employee turnover. For many employers, the problem all but disappeared. With the improvement in the economy, many companies - who would love to have your fine people on their payroll - will be recruiting again.
How vulnerable are you?
Beware of the tendency to gloss over this question. Pause for a few minutes and give this question some serious consideration. If you have a partner in the management of the business, engage in a focused conversation about the stability of your workforce. Look realistically at each and every employee - full-time, part-time, and even occasional.
Next, talk with your people. Conduct these private interviews as if they were hiring interviews. Ask questions about what they look for in a job, what they like best about their job, and what they'd change if they could. Listen to their words and be alert to their body language and their emotions. From these interviews, you'll gain a good sense of the stability of your workforce and what opportunities you might have to improve employee relations.
Based on what you learn, you will be able to make some plans about what sort of hiring you might have to do. Consider your growth potential. When people in your community have a little more money to spend - from a combination of a stronger economy and their own personal employment situations, would that higher consumer confidence show up in your cash flow? Be sure you're well-staffed so your customers really feel cared for.
Why People Leave
You can improve your employee retention if you have a higher sensitivity about why people leave their jobs. Here are five principal reasons that we've learned from our ongoing research.
Your employees are your most valuable-and most volatile-resource. Give them the care they deserve!
Roger Herman is author of Keeping Good People (Oakhill Press, 1999). He is an internationally recognized visionary leader and consultant in the field of employee retention. For more information or assistance in employee retention, e-mail email@example.com or call (800) 227-3566.
Many more articles in Motivation and Retention in The CEO Refresher Archives