By Lyndsey Hall
“You don’t build a business. You build people, and then people build the business.” Zig Ziglar
Ziglar wasn’t wrong, it takes a number of skilled and talented people to make a business successful; even with an innovative product or idea and a water-tight business plan.
But how do you attract the right people to your business, and make sure that they stay with you long-term? It can be difficult retaining your best staff when there are so many opportunities out there for ambitious, driven employees; it can seem as though the grass is always greener. That’s why it’s important to remind your employees why they joined you in the first place, and why they continue to benefit from working with and for you.
Here are 7 simple ways that you can maximise retention of your top talent, and attract the best and brightest to join your business:
- Hold Regular One-to-ones
Getting frequent updates from your employees’ allows you to spot any dissatisfaction or frustration early, and tackle it at the roots before it leads to a letter of resignation on your desk. Find out how they think they are doing, where they are hoping to go, and how they intend to get there; and then help them to do it.
Offer benefits such as flexible working, bonuses for successfully completed projects, training opportunities and cycle to work schemes. Everybody loves a freebie; even salary-sacrifice benefits are better than no benefits at all!
- Offer Career Development Opportunities
While you may think an employee is doing a great job and want them to continue doing so, your employees want to progress rather stand still. If you keep a staff member in their current position because you’d rather not waste time training someone new to do what they are already doing to a high standard, you could end up recruiting anyway and losing that top talent. If your employee understands not only their job, but the reason why it is necessary and the procedures behind it, would they make a good senior? Or if they have an excellent technical knowledge of their role, would they be useful as a trainer to new recruits? Promote your best staff when they are ready, or you could end up with nobody worthy of the role when you need them.
- Be Flexible
Nowadays, with the invention of remote desktops and the Cloud, we can all work from anywhere. Being adaptable is key to retaining top employees; if you can support them when they need it, they’ll be more likely to stick around when the going gets tough. Be flexible and allow your staff to work from home or pick their own hours when they need to, and you’ll build a loyal workforce in no time.
- Share Ideas
It’s important to feel like you’re being heard, and that your input is valued. Have regular brainstorming sessions with your teams and give everyone a chance to speak and share their opinions: one of the benefits of having a diverse workforce is that someone may come up with a solution to a problem that you would never have considered. Or, even better, they may spot a potential problem and solve it before it even occurs! Give them an opportunity to be heard and it will boost their confidence, and your bottom line!
- Get the Whole Team On-Board
Working on the same tasks day in, day out with no end in sight can be soul-destroying. Share your vision for the future with your workforce and get them invested in the idea. The most successful businesses are the ones where every single person, from the MD to the office assistant, are all working towards a common goal, and know their role in the success of the company.
It’s not all about what your employees can do for you, you also need to make sure your business is somewhere that talented and intelligent people want to work. How do you do that? Ask! Get periodic feedback from all of your employees; ask them what they love about working for you, what they hate, and what could do with a little improvement. You might be surprised by the responses, and it will give you the opportunity to make small changes that will keep your current staff happy, and make working for you more appealing to job hunters.
The most attractive thing to job hunters: a happy, fulfilled workforce. If your current employees are satisfied with their jobs and extoling the virtues of working in such a rewarding and collaborative environment to anyone who’ll listen, then the applications will come flooding in, whether you’re recruiting or not. Be open to hiring, even when there isn’t a specific role available – the best people don’t always wait to respond to your job ad, they are proactive in their job hunt. Follow our 7 simple steps, and your industry’s top talent will come to you.
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