Updated: Nov 7
Employee Retention and Engagement
Employee retention and engagement is a hot topic for employers big and small. From burnout to quiet quitting to the pandemic’s effect on how and where we work, to an ever-changing economy, holding onto employees and keeping them engaged is a priority.
Finding good talent isn’t easy, so once you get them, you want to hold onto them. So, how can you keep your employees happy and engaged?
The Conference Board Job Satisfaction 2023 report says, “Our most recent Job Satisfaction survey suggests that after establishing and maintaining competitive pay and benefits, leaders gain the most by offering flexible, hybrid work arrangements, and by emphasizing work experience and culture factors such as interesting work, reasonable workloads, and opportunities for career growth.”
The recent Gallup US Employee Engagement survey shares, “The survey measures several workplace elements, including employees' level of agreement about clarity of expectations, opportunities for development and their opinions counting at work. In short, engaged employees are involved in and enthusiastic about their work and workplace. Actively disengaged employees are disgruntled and disloyal because most of their workplace needs are unmet.”
Retention constitutes a major "weapon" in any company’s arsenal because of:
The growing importance of intellectual capital
The cost of employee turnover
Retention’s impact on customer satisfaction and profitability.
Fortunately, retaining and engaging employees is a resource you already have in your managers.
Managers play a key part in retaining and engaging employees
The manager has two main roles when it comes to retention and engagement:
1. Managing employees’ work and performance
2. Managing employees’ relationship with the organization
Managers can directly impact: clarity of expectations, interesting work, reasonable workloads, and opportunities for career development and growth. All of which is considered important in engaging employees by the Gallup and The Conference Board studies.
Managers can positively impact employee engagement and retention by:
Clarifying performance expectations and providing fair and accurate informal and formal feedback
Understanding what keeps employees with the organization
Understanding what employees value
Giving employees a chance to grow
Providing challenging and meaningful work
Giving recognition and respect
Helping to provide solutions to day-to-day challenges
Connecting employees with the organization and its success…connect the dots for them, help them see how the work they are doing impacts the business and how the business is impacting the world
Reinforcing pride in the organization, its mission, and its products
Helping to provide a great work environment and culture
Connecting employees with talented coworkers
Providing inspirational leadership
How To Get Started on Employee Retention and Engagement
Conduct a “Stay Interview”
Start by having some conversations about retention and engagement. Don’t wait to ask the important questions in the exit interview. Invite employees to one-on-one meetings to discuss:
The next step in their continued career development
How they make a difference and how you value their contributions
Some things that are important to know about their engagement
What will keep them here?
What might entice them away?
What is most energizing about their work?
What is most draining about their work?
Are they fully utilizing their talents?
What is inhibiting their success?
What you can do differently to best assist them?
What else is on their minds about engagement in their work and staying with the organization?
If you want to dig deeper or take a slightly different approach, meet with employees and ask the following:
What about your job makes you jump out of bed in the morning? What makes you hit the snooze button?
If you were to win the lottery and resign, what would you miss the most?
What would be the one thing that if changed in your current role would make you consider moving on?
If you had a magic wand, what would be the one thing you would change about this department?
If you had to go back to a position in your past and stay for an extended period of time, which one would it be and why?
Why employees stay
According to Beverly Kaye and Sharon Jordan-Evans in their book “Love ‘em or Lose ‘em: Getting Good People to Stay,” employees report the following reasons for why they stay in an organization:
Exciting work and challenge
Career growth and learning and development
Working with great people
Supportive management/good boss
Being Recognized, valued and respected
Meaningful work and making a difference
Pride in the organization, its mission, and its product
Great work environment and culture
We can help you show up for your employees in a meaningful way!
At Flourish HR, we help clients be the business they want to be; oriented to a strong mission and driven by grounding values. Have questions? We’d love to help. Flourish HR