August 20, 2015

The Dos and Do Nots: Retaining Employees

By Anastasia Warren


We are now in an employee market.

What does this mean? If you’re not working to retain your good employees, there is a chance they are looking elsewhere or being recruited.

Now is the time to be proactive and protect your company, your goals, your progress and most importantly, your employees. Here are the most crucial factors in increasing employee retention.

1. Culture

A company’s culture must be driven and maintained every day. It is not an easy task, and it is not something that develops and maintains itself. For every negative action, word or setback within your business – it takes around three positive ones to offset it.

You must be proactive in counteracting any sort of pushback – strive to push your culture each day and create the environment your employees want to work in. It’s exhausting, but it’s well worth it.

2. Work/Life Balance

We hear the phrase constantly, but that’s because it matters. Your employees are your employees, but they are people first. Work to value a work/life balance within your company, and make sure the value is known.

Don’t just preach it, practice it. Avoid telling your employees how much you value their personal lives and then turning around and saying “no” the first time someone asks for a few hours off to attend to family business.

3. Flexibility

It’s time to face it. The workplace is changing. Whether you change with it or not, companies are now offering different options such as remote working, flexible hours and more. Get in tune with what your employees want and need – and be sure to discuss reasonable and earned options for employees to feel trusted, respected and free in their role.

4. Compensation

Although employee pay is not the main factor in retention, it needs to be competitive. Wages are increasing and again, this is an employee market. Some of the employer’s power is gone in that, opportunity – good opportunity, is not lacking in the market place.

What is lacking? Good employees. Check-in on your market often to ensure your pay isn’t falling behind your competitor down the street.

5. Benefits

It is no longer only about dental, medical and vision for benefits (although that is extremely important – see ACA). Benefits now include things like paid time off for volunteerism, unlimited vacation time, free meals and more. How are you remaining relevant to the workforce? Try to think of new ways to provide benefits to your employees, and if you haven’t taken the plunge into good ol’ health benefits, I highly suggest you get to work before you lose employees to more generous companies, or you are penalized by affordable care requirements.

6. Value of Work

In the end, we all want to mean something. We want to wake up each day and do something that matters and has value. On top of that, we want to work for a company that matters and has value. Does your company have a corporate social responsibility and give back? How do you help and belong in your community? Why does each employees’ position matter in the bigger picture?

Answer these questions, and make sure your employees are aware. Value of work and daily significance matters in the long-term for employees to be happy, healthy and in this market, loyal. 

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