The economy is always changing. It seems to go in waves. And with it so goes employee turnover. Sometimes it seems that everybody wants to stay. Sometimes it seems that you get a wave of people leaving. For similar jobs. For different jobs. For promotions. All kinds of reasons.
Turnover can be frustrating. It’s costly. Sometimes it can seem like it’s not even your fault or that there wasn’t any way to avoid it. And that’s certainly true.
But there can be some things you can do to get ahead of things so you know you’re doing well to retain your best people.
Here are some thoughts.
1. Schedule Listening Sessions
Most businesses are busy working through processes and tasks. There isn’t much time for communication. This is a good and bad thing. It can be a bad thing if employees are starting to have building resentment. Or not even resentment, but other emotions that could lead to them seeking other options for work.
You can tell yourself that you want to meet with employees regularly. But you really need to get it recurring on your calendar. Maybe with every employee. Maybe with managers. The meeting doesn’t have to be formal. You can pitch it as just a time for you to listen to feedback and thoughts. Input on ideas and all kinds of things.
Ask questions. Listen. Odds are good that concerns will come up. You’ll see if there are signals that the person is considering leaving.
2. Schedule Competitive Research
Another item to put on the calendar is to look at the listings of the competition. And not just companies you directly compete against. Those that are listing the same positions that you employ. This is more difficult these days with more remote work available.
Maybe you work with a recruiter for your hiring. They might be willing to talk, at least a little, about what is out there. Trends they’re seeing.
It’s a good way to learn if you’re lacking in what you’re offering. To see if you need to change things. If you see it you can get your employees are looking at it too.
3. Perform Exit Interviews
One core purpose of exit interviews is to learn about the experience the employee had with your company. What they valued. What maybe led to a little resentment. You may not learn all the details, but there is still value in doing these. Even if they are short and sweet. Aim to be cordial. You’re looking to learn and to treat the person well. You never know what will happen in the future. Including the employee coming back or them referring someone else they know.
4. Pay More
It could really just come down to pay. There are times in the economy when there is high demand for employees. And the businesses that are doing the best will be willing to pay the most. That can obviously be a struggle. It can hurt the bottom line. But if there is any possible way to do it you may have to pay more. At least to catch up with what is going on in the market.
5. More Flexibility
It’s not always about money. There are other issues. One that seems to come up is flexibility. The ability to take days off. The ability to perhaps work slightly different hours than normal. Maybe take a couple hours off here or there. Again, it may not be possible for your business, but it’s at least worth considering. Especially if you listen to employees and hear that this is a main issue.
6. Burnout Avoidance
Burnout is another one that seems common in modern times. Part of it could be that we have easy access to constant communication. We can check emails from anywhere. Texts. Other messaging apps. We can always be in contact with our teams and employers. Is that a good thing? Perhaps not. Especially if there are signs of burnout at your workplace.
Putting in place procedures to help avoid this could be a key to retaining employees. Also looking at the tasks you add to each person’s plate. It’s easy to add something. But we don’t always keep a priority list and assess what should come off someone’s plate when we add something.
7. Fire Negative Employees
There could be a negative situation or situations at your place of work. You may not even realize it. Some kind of bullying. Or just drama that is leading to employees not looking forward to coming into work. If you feel like something is going on it’s worth investigating and finding a negative employee. If someone isn’t happy they may stay and cause issues. In general, if someone doesn’t want to be there it’s probably best to move on as soon as possible.
Sometimes it’s out of your control when it comes to employees leaving. It could be a good thing. You could be the type of place that fosters great people and they rise in the company until there is nowhere left for them to go except outside. As long as you have the process in place to continually bring in new people and help them grow you’ll be okay. But if you’re seeing issues, hopefully these few ideas can spark some inspiration for change.