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Five Tips for Improving Talent Retention

Talent retention is all about hanging on to the right people.

It used to be that a lot of managers thought just paying people more ensured that they would want to stay in your employ.

However, plenty of research has shown that although more money was a factor, it usually wasn’t THE critical element in talent retention. And even if it was sometimes true, that certainly isn’t the case in today’s complex world of remote work and global lockdowns.

In fact, like everything else in our pandemic-disrupted world, talent retention has become much more challenging, and that shows no signs of changing anytime soon.

The Harvard Business Review weighed in on this recently and observed that “(Though) it would be nice to believe that 2021 will be about stability and getting back to normal … this year is likely to be another full of major transitions. … While 2020 was the most volatile year in modern history, we would be mistaken to think that the disruption is over. ”

So, what do smart companies do to not just get through ANOTHER volatile, disruptive year, but to give their workforce the kind of growth experiences they need to better compete and be more deeply engaged as we work towards the better days that surely lie ahead?

Add value to your workforce

Fuel50 research on talent retention answers that question:

“The key to success in this increasingly competitive environment is to add value to your employees by tailoring work conditions to their individual needs, preferences, and talents.

At the same time, providing meaningful development opportunities allows employees to strengthen their ‘career capital’ and deepen their commitment to their role. This ensures a broad talent base with increased confidence and the ability to add value, as well as allowing you to build an organization where people want to work because they gain valuable skills and experience.”

So, how do you do this? How can you strengthen your workforce and help them to build on their “career capital”?

Here are five important tips (strategies} to help you improve your talent retention:

  1. Focus on internal talent mobility and provide your people with visibility to growth experiences. An opportunity marketplace solution will allow your workers to have a better long-term vision of their evolving role inside your organization. It also enables you to demonstrate your commitment to developing talent by improving visibility and access to growth experiences, which benefits both the employee AND the company.
  2. Identify what is going well, what can still be improved, and then turn those insights into action. If you aren’t sure what your employee survey data says, enlist the help of an expert who can guide and support the process, as well as present high-leverage recommendations to senior leadership. Mine your organization for deep data insights and analyze where there’s room for improvement, then go after it.
  3. Encourage a culture of open and continuous communication. Employees are more satisfied when they can communicate openly with managers about their problems or concerns. When you create a culture of open and continuous communication, by welcoming employees’ requests, you will find that they not only value the company more, but also their place within it.
  4. Ensure your workforce feels valued. A company is only good as its employees – and that means everyone across the entire organization. Showing people that they matter both boosts morale and gives them purpose. An easy way to help your people feel valued is to simply say “thank you” because you can’t say thank you enough.
  5. Understand your people’s goals and help to make them happen. The more you support each individual’s goals and aspirations — both their personal goals and those pertaining to their career — the more your people will be engaged and recognize that you are doing everything possible to offer them growth experiences, to help build their career, and ultimately to keep them on board.

Bottom line? Hang on to enough of the right people

Although the reasons for voluntary turnover are varied, Fuel50 research on talent retention has “identified common threads that contribute to attrition across a variety of sectors. In most cases, attrition may be traced to the basic fact that employees leave because they feel that they are investing more in their work than they are receiving.

This can occur due to a mismatch between the values, talents, and working conditions, and, increasingly, lack of meaningful developmental and advancement opportunities. The combination of these factors determines engagement levels, job satisfaction, and the overall value that employees place upon their job, which ultimately forms the basis of the decision of whether (someone decides) to stay or go.”

Management guru Jim Collins, author of business classics Good to Great and Built to Last, put it best:… the single biggest constraint on the success of (any) organization is the ability to get and to hang on to enough of the right people.”

Ultimately, when you champion growth experiences and learning opportunities, you’ll find that hanging on to the right people becomes a whole lot easier.

Hold on Tight: Talent Retention Research Paper

An in-depth look at engagement and retention in these changing times. We present key guidelines for increasing engagement and retention in a simple and cost-effective manner, as well as investigating why employees are increasingly thinking about leaving their current jobs and what can be done to prevent this talent exodus in your organization.

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