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Revolving Door? 3 Engagement Strategies to Retain Employees

By John Fanguy Employee Retention

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Concerned about employee engagement? Are you scheduling exit interviews faster than you can recruit for the backfill? If you are seeing higher than average turnover, it’s time to review some of the basic performance management principles that may be causing your employees to hit the road.

As an HR professional, it’s important to understand that there are a variety of factors that contribute to engagement. Your job is to understand what makes your employees tick…what drives them to succeed. This knowledge (or lack of it) has tremendous impact on your organization’s ability to compete in the marketplace. If engagement suffers, innovation and creativity will decrease. Instead of driving the business forward, it will be lagging behind your strongest competitors.

Walk the Walk

From the first day on the job to the next 30 days, an employee is able to determine if leadership is truly doing what they say. Is the messaging consistent in regards to their role? Is there clear alignment with organizational goals and does the culture actually support those goals? Often times, we work so hard at branding and image, we forget to actually put strategies in place to reinforce our efforts. When this occurs, it is evident in employee behavior. Disengagement, lack of creativity and separation from the company can leave your teams scrambling to make up the difference, which will impact your bottom line. A recent Hewitt study on employee engagement and culture revealed the following: “both cultural alignment and engagement have a proven relationship with a company’s financial performance. Together, the two forces have a more positive impact on revenue than when working independently. One without the other poses a grave risk for the organization.” If you align your organizational goals with employee engagement, it produces more synergy and increasing levels of creativity, which places your company as

A recent Hewitt study on employee engagement and culture revealed the following: “both cultural alignment and engagement have a proven relationship with a company’s financial performance. Together, the two forces have a more positive impact on revenue than when working independently. One without the other poses a grave risk for the organization.” If you align your organizational goals with employee engagement, it produces more synergy and increasing levels of creativity, which places your company as an industry leader. The Hewitt study offered clear evidence that “alignment between personal and current values indicates that work is a positive experience for employees” in leading companies.

Reward and Recognition

Rewards should be given for outstanding performance…that are tied to goals…and impact the business in a positive way. Great performance requires an equally great reward.

Sometimes it’s a struggle to come up with the best way to motivate your best contributors. I’ll admit that a t-shirt or a shiny pen just won’t cut it. Let’s say you’ve got a team that worked long hours and weekends, putting together an RFP for a potential client, which eventually led to a project win. I’m thinking a t-shirt isn’t going to work.

So how do you determine how best to reward and recognize performance? Entrepreuner.com shared that you should start.

Understand what is important to driving organizational success and then align performance goals to match. Follow through with timely (and suitable) rewards and recognition to reinforce the behavior you desire.

Consistent Feedback

It’s been said that employees don’t leave jobs, they leave their managers. Employees need regular, consistent feedback to know what’s expected of them and how they’ll be rated against those expectations. Lack of understanding and poor performance often stems from a lack of communication. If an employee feels they are floundering because they can’t get a straight answer as to how they’re doing, they will feel less motivated to perform.

Don’t wait for annual review time. Provide real-time feedback regularly. This doesn’t have to be a long, documented conversation. It can range from a quick email, to a short phone call, or even a text. Managers often feel saddled with all of the reviews that need to be done at year-end. However, if you regularly provide feedback, you’re one step closer to completing that evaluation (and there are no surprises later!) Texts, emails, instant messages, calendar invites….all are notable and available to you for maintaining a record of discussion with your employee.

Most performance management systems don’t account for regular, informal feedback. If you don’t have a way to keep track, use your calendar. Make sure you are recognizing good performance and are aware of struggles and noting areas of improvement.

Keep that revolving door closed. Understand what motivates your employees and incorporate strategies that will engage your workforce. Don’t delay. Organizations are regularly adjusting to meet the needs of talent. If you wait too long, your talent will be out the door and opening the door of your competitor.

john fanguy

Posted By John Fanguy

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