According to a poll by Gallup, “Fifty-two percent of voluntarily exiting employees say their manager or organization could have done something to prevent them from leaving their job.” With over half of employees willingly leaving workplaces, managers can’t and shouldn’t assume their business is somehow exempt from this problem. But attracting and retaining quality employees may involve some humility and creativity. Let’s look at some ways your business can approach this costly problem.
Pay Employees Fairly (And Don’t Skip Benefits!)
Your employees are the backbone of your company. Without them, your business would no doubt fall apart, so you have to consider how much the success and continuation of your business is worth to you. When you see your employees as an investment, it helps you determine a salary that is both within your budget and acceptable to them. Quality workers know what they’re worth and will not settle for “less than” wages.
Additionally, make sure you’re providing some benefits to your employees. If you’re a small business, you may not be able to offer everything, but you should consider offering at least one or two benefits such as:
- Continued education
- Maternity/paternity leave
- PTO (paid time off)
On the surface, benefits may appear to hurt your bottom line. But as we explained earlier, losing employees can actually be far more costly than offering them the salary and benefits they want/need upfront. So look at benefits as an investment, too, that will pay off in employee retention.
Promote a Healthy Work Environment
A toxic work environment is one of the fastest ways to get rid of your best employees. Every business has competition, so if you want to stand out and not only attract good employees but also retain them, you have to maintain a healthy work environment.
There are numerous ways you can ensure your business remains a welcoming place to be, but one (often overlooked) responsibility you have as a manager is to pay attention to how your employees treat one another. Gossip, rudeness, and insensitivity may seem small in the moment. But compounded, negative interactions between your employees can have a fracturing effect on your team. Your workplace needs to be safe, physically and emotionally, for everyone who works there. Otherwise, you’ll see one great employee after another walk out the door without looking back.
Ensure Employees Know They Are Valued and Needed
If your employees feel disposable and replaceable, they’ll act that way. Therefore, employee retention is best achieved when managers and supervisors let employees know they are valued and needed. Prioritize open communication, make yourself available and approachable, and regularly invite your employees to voice their ideas and any concerns they may have.
If you’re already doing all of these things and want to go the extra mile, thoughtful actions such as inviting your employees out to lunch (not to discuss business but just to get to know one another) or giving a Christmas bonus each year can really help your team feel like you value them as people (not just as employees). This, in turn, makes them more likely to stay long-term.