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I’ve noticed that Mother Nature is sending us earlier sunsets and cooler nights, giving us clear signs that the sweet days of summer won’t last forever.  Autumn is right around the corner.

There are two predictable employee turnover spikes every year – spring and fall.  So, now’s a great time to be thinking about how to reduce the amount of employee turnover we experience this year.

Why Do They Leave?

Most people leave their jobs because of their supervisor.  You read it right.  Not because of money.  Not because of benefits.

And not because their supervisor doesn’t know the technical aspects of the job either.

It’s because of how their supervisor makes them feel.  If they feel valued and supported, they are less likely to actively look for another job.

Rather than sit back and wait for the inevitable turnover, I encourage you to take a different, more proactive approach.  Yes, it’ll take a bit of time now, but it could save you countless hours down the road of worry, interviewing, and training new employees.

It’s a simple, three-step process.

Step One – Identify Your Top Team Members

Start by identifying your key team members, the ones that you’d have a meltdown if you lost.  If you’re not sure who these people are, try this mental imagery.

Imagine each of your employees, one at a time, coming into your office and handing you their resignation letter.  Which ones would make you breathe a sigh of relief?  Which ones would you be tempted to throw money or meet nearly any demand they had at that moment to get them to stay?

The latter group is the one we want to focus on.

Step Two – Understand What They Need

Think deeply about what you know about them and their work preferences.  Here are a few questions to get your thoughts flowing:

  • What motivates him/her?
  • Is there something that you can add to or remove from their job to make it their dream job?
  • What makes them feel valued?
  • What makes them feel part of a team?

Write these things down so you can refer back to them on a regular basis.  You likely know a lot about the people who work with you, but if you don’t know the answers to these questions, go ask them!

Step Three – Take Action to Provide Them Those Things

Once you know what’s important to each person, add “Retain Employees” to your calendar at least two times a week.

Without it on your calendar, it’ll be winter before you know it, and you won’t have done anything different than you’re doing today.

This isn’t a one-time and you’re done thing.  It must be consistent to ensure you’re meeting your top performers’ needs.

It may be as simple as regularly taking the time to tell them what they’re doing well and what specifically makes them so valuable to you.  If you’re not good at verbal praise, it’s a skill that can be developed and the best way to do that is to practice.  Start today.  You may feel awkward, but awkward praise is by far better than no praise at all.

Before You Go…

What have you done to make your top performers more satisfied?  You can leave your answer in a comment below.

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If there are any topics that you’d like to read more about, please email me directly at jodi@people-mattershr.com.

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People Matters supports business owners and leaders in all areas of human resources management including the topic in this article.

HR is what we at People Matters love to do! We help our clients create great workplaces that engage employees and produce better business results.

Please give me a call at 517-925-8257 or visit our website at www.people-mattershr.com for more information.

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