If this is underpinned by a strong Vision, Mission and Values, and it permeates the Organisational Culture, your Employees will find it hard to leave and, those that do will feedback their less positive experiences at other Employers.
It is therefore essential that a well structured and excellently executed Communication Strategy and Plan are in place to inform the Employees and also to engage in dialogue with them around the Organisation's Brand and Culture. It is also extremely important that this is not just seen as the responsibility of the HR Department but as the accountability of all Leadership as the Ambassadors of the Company and its Culture.
Critical to the Communication Strategy will be a well thought out Reward & Recognition system, with a big emphasis on the Recognition part. The power of Recognition is significant, whether it be a simple thank you from the boss or an award during a 'Town Hall' meeting or Conference. Rewards are nice to complement this recognition but should be relatively small in monetary value and preferably a nice token or memorial of the recognition.
However, recognition and praise will not work in a culture of low overall engagement and so cannot be the only part of the equation and will need to be integral to the overall Cultural approach.
A culture of Performance Management, with open dialogues and a clear prioritisation is required to facilitate an environment where our people's talent can shine and they are able to understand how they contribute the business' success and are motivated to do so. Leaders must facilitate this culture of performance through coaching and by getting out of their team members way when they are doing the work.
"Leaders must facilitate this culture of performance through coaching and by getting out of their team members way when they are doing the work."
2. Career Opportunity, Personal Development & Challenge
Career Opportunity, Personal Development and Challenge are elements of their job that most Employees want and this is not simply the cliché of promotion to the top of the organisation but can be as simple as, for example, an Operator who would like to become a Team Leader or a Procurement Engineer who wants to work in Marketing. Providing these types of opportunity for existing employees and avoiding the 'familiarity breeds contempt' trap, which often results in external recruitment, will create an environment whereby Employees see opportunity and interest in the Organisation and a bright future.
Coupling this with Personal Development opportunities, through a mixture of Formal Training, Leadership and Peer Coaching, and on-the-job training, will help Team Members to grow their talent and will help them to feel in control of their own development; an autonomy for which most of us yearn.
As a final piece of this element, we must ensure that our Team Members feel challenged in their role. This should not be confused with overloading them, or giving them tasks for which they are inadequately equipped, but instead providing them with stretch goals and assignments and assuring that there is a culture of performance whereby they know their targets, know how they can meet them, problem solve deviations from the targets and have the support to succeed.
3. Total Compensation
This final element is the one which usually gains the most attention, as it is ultimately the reason why most of us work with an Organisation; to earn the monies required to facilitate our lives. This is why work is sometimes referred to as our 'livelihood' or 'gainful employment'. However, it is element that has been proven to be the least effective in terms of motivation of employees in the long run.
The Compensation in its totality, when all components, such as Salary, Pension, Bonuses, Allowances, etc. are considered, must, of course, be competitive in the market place. However, if the first two elements of the Retention Triangle are well executed, it need not be competing at the high end of the market scale, comparable to similar Organisations, as the investment in Career Opportunity and Brand & Culture will provide a higher retention factor than the Compensation delta could account for.
If we embrace the retention model, we can utilise it as a way to drive Employee Engagement and to increase Organisational Capability through the development of our People. As a result, it can boost recruitment, as employees become ambassadors of the Organisation and 'word of mouth' permeates the positives of a career with it. Of course, the Employees that are being developed will be highly marketable and 'good attrition' will occur but, with a mature attitude to their departure, thanking them for their service and leaving the door open for a future return, the Culture will only be enhanced and your Organisation's reputation in the marketplace bolstered further.
...'good attrition' will occur but, with a mature attitude to their departure, thanking them for their service and leaving the door open for a future return, the Culture will only be enhanced...
Employee retention need not be an art form anymore but can be an integral part of great Leadership and both the catalyst, and outcome of, the creation of a High Performance Culture.
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