The business and leadership world is abuzz with the prediction of an impending wave of employee turnover, recently dubbed “The Great Resignation” by Anthony Klotz, professor at Texas A&M University.
If you, like many business owners and leaders, are concerned about the great resignation hitting your workplace, here are 3 key strategies to help promote employee retention and insulate from an exodus.
1. Promote connection
Connection to the company’s mission/vision/values
Connection to leadership
Connection to one another
Take the time to help team members see how they are connected to the bigger picture and mission of the organization, be intentional about taking time to connect with each team member, and schedule opportunities for team members to connect with one another. Employees who feel connected in these areas have greater satisfaction, are more engaged, more productive, and more likely to stay.
2. Develop and operate with a unified leadership philosophy.
Too often an employee’s experience with a company is dependent upon the immediate supervisor they happen to have (for good or bad).
Like a customer service philosophy, your company should have a unified leadership philosophy.
Of course supervisors can and should bring their unique personality to the role, but the overall experience of each employee shouldn’t vary dramatically. You can read more about this in a previous blog post and learn more by watching this YouTube video.
3. Be flexible where you can and when you can.
Obviously not all organizations are able to operate with a fully remote workforce, but there are likely areas within each role where you can provide team members with some measure of flexibility and/or input into how their work is structured. Talk with your team and ask for their suggestions, challenges, concerns. Perhaps it's not remote work (or their work schedule at all) that is their primary concern, but rather developing a specific skillset or upward mobility.
Be intentional about asking your team members what's on their mind and in what areas of their career they'd like to have more agency.
This type of empowerment will go a long way in retaining your staff.
Keep in mind, not all employee turnover is bad, and some team members are going to leave regardless and for a variety of reasons, but a mass exodus from any organization is a recipe for disaster. Not only is it costly in the short-term (lost productivity and cost to hire and train new team members), but it leaves you vulnerable to long-term loss (time to cultivate the team culture, refine processes, etc).
Many employers and employees are just starting the transition back to the office, and it’s the perfect time to make this all a priority. Even if you are remaining a fully remote team - it’s worth evaluating your status in these areas, because the options for fully remote positions are expanding, and your people will go where the workplace prioritizes these areas.