Recruitment and Retention Strategies

As we worked through The Importance of Employee Retention, we looked at just a few of the direct costs that have such a significant impact on an organization’s bottom line when voluntary turnover is high. Now let’s start digging into some critical steps we can take to make each of our organizations a place great team members rarely want to leave AND a place that the best people in our industries WANT to come to work!

Before we get rolling though, I need to make a few statements that I really hope aren’t at all necessary: Building this kind of reputation for any organization will take ongoing effort! This will take time and commitment. It will also be somewhat difficult to achieve but far easier to ruin. When we get it right though, the juice will absolutely be worth the squeeze!

I’ve already shared what John Maxwell says accounts for as much as 65% of all voluntary turnover, people leaving their managers, and we’ve looked at why leadership development is important when we’re working to resolve that issue. But if we want to build a reputation for being somewhere the best team members want to stay and great people want to become a part of, we can’t stop with only developing our current leaders. We need to create an atmosphere where every single individual has opportunities to develop themselves; their technical expertise and the soft skills that will be so critical as they have a bigger and bigger impact on the people around them.

One of the biggest concerns I’ve ever heard about providing opportunities for team members to grow has been that they might take those new skills the company just paid for and go to work for a competitor. My immediate response has ALWAYS been to emphasize that there’s only one thing worse than training someone and having them leave: not training them and having them STAY!!! Then you’re stuck with people that your competitors don’t want...

Seriously though, making the investment to grow our team members not only provides them with the skill development they need to progress in their career, it shows them that we see enough value in them as individuals and that we believe in them. More often than not, showing this kind of value yields far more results than just what they can apply from any particular training session; it creates a level of buy-in that’s rarely achieved when we’re not intentional about showing how much we value them. Then we just need to treat them with respect and make sure we reward them for their higher levels of performance. If we’re doing those things, it will be really tough for a competitor to lure them away!

Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not suggesting that we throw money at tools and training blindly with hopes of buying them off. Notice I always refer to training and development as an investment, not an expense or even a cost of doing business. The purpose of any investment is to gain a tangible return. Developing our team is no different. Not only should these investments have a measurable impact on our voluntary turnover rates, we should also be able to see a positive impact on productivity and overall profitability.

As we solidify this kind of reputation, and we’re able to develop and keep great team members, we’ll begin to see this impact our recruitment process in a few different ways. We'll start looking at those next time. Until then, you’re welcome to see if the next time Cindy and I will be offering complimentary access to our How Top Leaders Set the Tone for Recruitment & Retention webinar fits your schedule...

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