If you’re fortunate enough to have a few star employees, then you know what a loss it would be if they were to leave. Valuable team members are engaged, enthusiastic, and committed to their work. They care about your mission and take ownership of their roles.
These kinds of employees are hard to come by. In fact, according to research done by Gallup over the last 17 years, only 30 percent of U.S. workers are considered engaged in their jobs. So, what about the remaining 70 percent of employees?
Well, roughly 50 percent of employees do the minimum required, with very little extra effort. The most common employee is the one who shows up, watches the clock, and does the minimum before clocking out.
If you’re still curious about the remaining 17 to 20 percent, well, they’re referred to as “actively disengaged.” This group just kinda floats along barely doing the minimum, and they could be working for you now.
That 30 percent is highly sought after, and could potentially be dragged down by disengaged employees or look for other work. It used to be that people stayed with their company for decades, but now people are more easily tempted to jump ship for better opportunities.
The most effective ways of keeping employees from leaving:
So how do you keep your best employees? The research based around Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” provides insight into the strategies used to keep happy employees while meeting their bottom line. Great Place to Work broke it down into 3 main criteria: a lot of trust, sense of purpose, and a focus on developing all employees. Sounds like a win-win for everyone.
Michael C. Bush, CEO of Great Place to Work, recently said:
“The new, largely uncharted business territory is about developing every ounce of human potential so that organizations can reach their full potential. All companies–including the “Best Workplaces”–face the challenge of creating an outstanding culture for everyone, no matter who they are or what they do for the organization.
A common theme in these “Best Workplaces” is they provide employees with the freedom to make decisions and an opportunity to keep growing. As humans, we desire growth and some amount of control.”
Based on that information, here are 10 tips to keeping your most valuable employees:
1. Engage their entrepreneurial interests
Many great employees have entrepreneurial spirits. Find a way of giving them freedom in and ownership of their work. When you do, they’re likely to perform at a higher level.
2. Open communication
Be transparent as possible in your boss-employee relationships. Tell your team what’s going on in the business, what the challenges are, and how their work affects the company and customers. Give them a chance to have input and suggest ideas.
3. Help them grow
Star employees care about their work, and if they can’t progress or take on new responsibilities, eventually they will move on. Give them opportunities to learn new skills or roles in your company that help their long term goals.
4. Expose them to new responsibilities.
Don’t be afraid to stretch them with work assignments that will test their skills and expand their mind.
5. Give them the support they need
Sometimes star employees end up having to do double the work to make up the slack of other team members, which can become exhausting. Hire other “go-getters” to create a supportive team.
6. Get to know them
Get to know your employees on a more personal level. This will show that you see them more as just an employee, but as a human being.
7. Get their feedback.
Chances are, your employees are engaging in tasks that you haven’t had to do in awhile, so they’ll have valuable insight into what’s working and what isn’t. They’ll appreciate the fact that you recognize their expertise.
8. Work on your culture
Culture has a great impact in achieving your company’s mission. By strengthening the culture in your organization, your employees will more easily see the bigger picture.
9. Let your top employees train or help others.
One study revealed that workers who help others (as little as 10 to 30 minutes per day) feel more capable, confident, and useful.
10. Never stop attaching meaning and purpose to their work.
Set short- and long-term goals that your star employees will be passionate about pursuing.
In short, if your employees feel valued, respected, and are given some freedom in how they do their job, they’ll stay around much longer.