Retention is the New Acquisition
To many, the New Year is a time of reflection and change that brings forth anticipation for new beginnings. While there is no doubt that “new” does sound luminous, when it comes to your team members, the grass is not always greener on the other side. In fact, many workplaces are now showing that retention is the new acquisition. As leaders, we are tasked with “watering our own grass” and building off of the excitement that the new year brings to make our team stronger and more motivated in a time of change. Working to retain our people is the key to success; It’s the best way to keep our employees satisfied on the job, working hard and efficiently, and is the key to helping our businesses to thrive. As Mark always says, a happy cow gives more milk.
Low retention comes at a great cost. Each member on every level of our team has a specific skill set and acquired knowledge different from the rest. Often, our boots on the ground rely on each other and have developed over time a groove that allows them to work seamlessly with one another. This dynamic can crumble if turnover is high within the organization. When an employee leaves there is a loss of knowledge within the team, creating a negative impact on teamwork and productivity. Alternatively, when our leaders focus on retaining and nourishing the talent, the benefit is a highly motivated team, increased revenue, quality customer service, increased engagement and high levels of employee satisfaction. Turnover comes at a much higher cost and loss than retention.
We can always seem to find the time to interview new talent when dealing with employee turnover. However, the smartest person in the world won’t be a good hire if they lack the will to do the hard work. It is time to adjust your priorities as a leader and become more focused on treating your employees well, engaging them, and investing in their training. Showing your team how much you care is essential, and there are many ways this can be done.
One way to begin working towards a higher level of retention is taking the time to connect with your team. The best leaders are the best connectors. It is important as a leader to sweat with your employees because when you do, they can better handle the heat. As leaders, we need to set aside time to work with our team on the front line, as it’s those people who are closest to the fire that know what is going on, what’s working well, and what isn’t. When we fail to do this, we put ourselves at risk of becoming immune to what is going on in the field. Make sure to say hello, get to know your team, and understand the workplace culture. For a team to stay motivated, they need something to look forward to. Paint them a picture of what the future looks like for them at your company. When workers feel valued, their sense of duty and belonging increases and retaining the strong members of your team is more achievable.
This year, retention will be key. Instead of continuously taking the time to conduct exit interviews, hire new, train, and hope that it works out, try taking the time to set yourself up for success and apart from the rest. Be the employer of choice, put the time in on the front lines, and connect with your team. When actively working to increase retention, the benefits are sure to come full circle with more positive workplace culture and higher levels of morale and productivity. When you love what you do it’s not a job anymore, but a way of life.
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