One Simple Step for Improving Retention of Your Best Employees

The retention of an organization’s best and most important employees can often be viewed as being complicated. Some might believe that an intricate formula is involved for making sure that top talent remains with the company.

However, that’s not necessarily the case.

That’s because there’s a simple first step for improving the retention of your employees. That step is neither complicated nor intricate . . . but it does require thoughtful intent.

Consider a recent study by Appirio, an information technology consulting company based in Indianapolis. As part of that study, the company asked workers to reflect upon the qualities of their worst bosses. According to the responses, their worst bosses:

  • Never gave credit where credit was due (32%)
  • Rarely gave verbal praise or support (28%)
  • Didn’t help me navigate the road to a promotion (24%)
  • Viewed me as a replaceable cog in the machine (13%)
  • Were stingy with bonuses and gifts (3%)

Add the two most popular answers listed above, and that’s 60% of workers who indicated that their worst bosses did not appreciate them or their work in one way or another. Now let’s examine another question posed in the study: “If I was interviewing at a new company, I’d care most about . . .” Below are the results:

  • Whether people felt appreciated (60%)
  • How the rest of the team felt about my would-be boss (27%)
  • How long it would take to get promoted (5%)
  • How often I could expect a raise (4%)
  • The frequency of awards and recognition (3%)

The correlation is unmistakable. A combined 60% of respondents indicated that their worst boss either “never gave credit where credit was due” or “rarely gave verbal praise or support.” Then 60% of respondents chose “whether people felt appreciated” as the #1 thing they would care most about when interviewing at a new company.

As you’ve no doubt heard before, “People don’t leave companies, they leave bosses.”

That mantra is true. People will stay at organizations if they have leaders who are worth following. In fact, they will stay in jobs they don’t especially enjoy if they have the opportunity to follow leaders who are worth following.

There are many things that can make you a leader worth following. However, the results of the Appirio survey and subsequent study plainly illustrate that one of those things is appreciation, specifically appreciation shown to employees for good performance.

And THAT is the one simple step toward the retention of your best employees: saying “thank you” and showing appreciation.

After all, your best employees are the ones who warrant the most appreciation in the first place. They’re the ones who are working the hardest, being the most productive, and providing the most value to the organization (especially in terms of the bottom line).

If there is a group of people to whom you should definitely be showing appreciation, it’s your best employees. That is the simplest and most important step toward retaining their services and cultivating their loyalty.

We help support careers in one of two ways: 1. By helping to find the right opportunity when the time is right, and 2. By helping to recruit top talent for the critical needs of organizations. If this is something you would like to explore further, please send an email to stacy@thevetrecruiter.com.