Loyal Employees are Your #1 Asset
“Take care of your employees and they’ll take care of your business,” according to Richard Branson, Founder of The Virgin Group. This is the thinking of many start-ups and tech giants. Are they on to something?
We have all heard stories of foosball tables, on-call doctors, endless free food, an ‘ask me anything’ Q&A from leaders… What’s behind these insane perks? Employee loyalty and happiness. Big companies with big budgets are doing all that they can to retain the staff that they have invested in recruiting.
What About Small Firms With Small Budgets?
Small firms can’t afford on site chefs, valet parking, or huge bonus checks at the end of the quarter. But, there is still a lot that they can do to keep staff happy and make them want to stay. Sincere appreciation goes a long way towards high morale. Praise your staff publicly; it is always great to recognize excellence. On the other hand, coaching and reprimands should be done in private to avoid shaming and embarrassing people. Let your staff know that you appreciate their contributions and that they make a difference.
Very few people would show up to work every day if they weren’t getting a paycheck. Fair pay is important and contributes to a sense of self worth. It is good business practice to pay your staff the ‘going rate’ for your region. Do your best to match what other organizations offer for a similar position, or run the risk of losing your employees to competitors.
Most people actually want to grow and to be challenged. They are learners by nature. The people that you want to keep are the ones who embrace and feel empowered by the opportunity to grow with the company. They are the ones who you want to retain.
Mentoring and Training
When you mentor and train your staff, you are investing in them and they appreciate it. Training sets your staff up for success within the company. Conversely it also sets them up for success outside of the company. It’s your job to make them want to stay. A popular meme on LinkedIn puts it succinctly: “What if I train them and they leave? What if you don’t train them and they stay?” If your end goal is success, you need well-trained employees who want to build a successful enterprise.
People want to know that they are valued; it keeps them enthusiastic and gives them a strong sense of accomplishment. Promotions, awards, and recognition of a job well done, reward your staff and keep their job satisfaction levels high. Promotions and recognition are tangible signs that they are valued by leadership.
Employee Happiness Matters
The reality is millennials do have a record of job and career switching – about once every five years (or less). But there are things that you can do to keep your staff happy so that leaving is not a priority for them. You can actually make them want to stay with the company without offering perks that will break the budget.
Leaders Build Loyalty
Great leaders intentionally build a culture that positions employees for success. If you put your staff first, they will in turn put your business first. Employees who feel challenged, treated fairly, and valued by the company will work enthusiastically to contribute to the company’s success. Successful leaders make sure their best employees want to stay.