New approaches to employee retention- Part 2

Part two of “New approaches to employee retention”:

According to Wharton management professor Adam Grant, who studies job motivation and meaningful work, “On one hand, financial security is an important determinant of morale, so there’s reason to believe that companies will be facing difficulties. On the other hand, when times are tight, some employees become more grateful for the positive features of their jobs. This is only possible, though, if companies retain the practices that make employees’ jobs intrinsically motivating and meaningful.”…”When bosses can’t promise eternal employment, the best substitute is to offer neutrality, transparency and employee involvement in decision-making.”

In the SHRM survey that polled 600 randomly selected employees at small to large companies, the opportunity to use their skills and abilities was the second most important aspect of job satisfaction and their organization’s financial stability and their relationship with their immediate supervisor tied as the third most important aspect. Although employees value communication with senior managers, less than one-third of employees reported feeling very satisfied with that communication. According to the researchers this could be driven by economic forces: “If employers don’t have good news, it’s hard for them to be communicative with their employees.”

Notably, the low level of employee engagement is a red flag for employers. Just over one half of employees report feeling focused and enthusiastic about their work, 52% report feeling completely plugged in at work and only slightly more than 40% are satisfied with their career development opportunities.

Even in tough times, fostering employee engagement remains a critical best practice. Here are seven key drivers of employee engagement:

Commit to employee development as a priority. Despite hiring freezes, re-focusing talent acquisition and retention on internal mobility, whenever possible can help. During uncertain times, promoting people within the organization creates a sense of encouragement and loyalty that can help prevent the mass exodus of talent that typically happens in the aftermath of a recession.

Be sure that employees can positively answer these questions: What am I doing? Where am I going? and Why am I doing it? Employees need to understand how their work affects business outcomes. Building an emotional connection to the organization itself will stimulate engagement.

Discuss with employees if they feel their skills are being utilized effectively and ask if they could contribute in other ways.

Provide appropriate recognition.

  • Be aware of the personal characteristics of great leaders.
  • Foster open and effective communication as well as co-worker cooperation.
  • Clearly communicate the company’s strategy and mission as well as core/shared values.
  • Fairly and consistently implement workplace practices and procedures.

The true differentiation of any organization is the culture, the people -the talent- and they underpin an organization’s ability to remain viable and competitive. Experienced employees have a legacy knowledge and commitment to safe work practices that should not be undervalued.

The Seltzer Group, located in Eastern Pennsylvania, specializes in developing safety, workers compensation, human resources, claims, and risk financing programs. They are a proud member of the Keystone Insurers Group and are nationally recognized for their expertise in workers compensation solutions. The Seltzer Group serves businesses and individuals locally, regionally, and on the national level.

New approaches to employee retention- Part 2 was last modified: August 26th, 2014 by Sarah McGorry