17 employee retention strategies to keep your best employees

17 employee retention strategies to keep your best employees by Robert Imbrie,  Predictive Index, Craftsman Greetings Leaders of The Cover...

5 min read

17 employee retention strategies to keep your best employees

by Robert Imbrie, 
Predictive Index, Craftsman

Greetings Leaders of The Covery and REGYMEN Fitness!

Summer is off to a rapid and furious start, and with that comes new challenges in hiring on top of an already tough time. I found this article from the folks at Predictive Index that I thought might be helpful and spark some ideas for you as you take on the task of hiring well and keeping your team engaged.

Enjoy! And as always, please contact me if I can help you with hiring, inspiring, and developing your people!

1. Hire for culture fit.

Employee retention starts with the right hires. When employees are a strong cultural fit for your company, they tend to stay longer, work more productively, and report higher job satisfaction. 

To find a great cultural fit, it helps to start with cultural interviews and similar strategies. You might also consider using hiring software, which can quantify your culture and help you select candidates that match your values and business needs. 

2. Pay attention to your onboarding process.

An effective onboarding process helps new employees ramp up faster  and stay longer. If you don’t currently have a system for onboarding—or if it’s not getting the results you need—you’ll want to consider building or revamping your onboarding process.

3. Compete with compensation.

Poor compensation is one of the most common ways companies lose great employees. Make sure you’re paying high performers the money they deserve. Otherwise, you may lose more money than you save in retraining and onboarding costs.

4. Consider ESOPs and profit-sharing programs.

Profit-sharing programs incentivize employees to have a long-term perspective. Often, these programs take several years before employees receive the full benefits—which encourages employees to stay longer.

5. Acknowledge and reward engagement and efforts.

Results are important, but so is attitude. When engaged employees actively work to participate in and improve the organization, make sure to support and reward them—even if it’s not one of their official deliverables. The more employees feel they have a voice in the organization, the longer they’re likely to stay.

6. Watch employee well-being carefully.

Stressed, distressed, and low-energy employees are often a precursor to resignations. When morale issues arise, try to address them early.

7. Encourage open communication and feedback.

Nothing saps motivation like a problem you can’t fix. If you want your employees to have a long, happy tenure, they need to know they have a voice in your organization. When an employee can fix a problem, they will. When they can’t, they’ll leave.

8. Provide training and development options.

When employees can’t grow in your organization, they might be happy for a little while—but eventually, they’ll leave. Training and development helps employees grow their career within your organization, which leads to motivated, knowledgeable employees with longer tenures.

9. Be transparent and honest in top-down communication.

Dishonesty is one of the fastest ways to alienate your employees. When big changes are happening, try to stay transparent and forthright with your employees through top-down communication. They’ll be more likely to face the new challenges with you—instead of running for the door.

10. Encourage teamwork and team synergies.

Different teams in your organization usually have different cultures. One might be more rowdy and risk-taking, while another might be careful and deliberate.

The best thing you can do as an organization is to guide these microcultures so that they match your business goals. Consider using talent strategy software to analyze and manage team dynamics.

11. Introduce meaningful perks and rewards.

Sometimes a small reward goes a long way. If your employees have to put in extra work to get a project out the door, consider using gift cards or other perks to make them feel recognized. These rewards don’t cost much, but they make a huge difference the next time your team needs to go above and beyond.

12. Embrace remote work and build a hybrid workplace.

In the past, companies could get away with forcing everyone to work in-person. Now that remote and hybrid options are more common, that strategy has become a retention liability.

By building a hybrid workplace—in other words, a workplace with both in-person and remote options—you can meet everyone’s needs. Employees that prefer remote work can do remote work. Employees that prefer in-person work can do in-person work. And employees that just want the flexibility to take a couple days from home every week can do that too.

13. Make work-life balance matter.

Often companies will claim to support a work-life balance—but reward employees that stay nights and weekends.

A bad work-life balance eventually drains morale, productivity, and retention. To keep your employees happy and functional, you need to enforce boundaries and reward people who can say ‘no.’

14. Allow reduced workdays and workweeks.

An occasional half-day can be as refreshing as a vacation—and it can be great motivation for a job well done.

If your employees are consistently hitting their metrics, consider allowing them to take off early. This rewards productivity over time spent at the desk—with the added bonus of keeping employees refreshed, happy, and loyal.

15. Let employees blow off some steam with company and team events.

When people have friends at work, they tend to be happier, more motivated, and more likely to stay at their job. Team retreats and events help your employees bond, which sets them up for retention and success.

16. Identify lack of engagement early (and fix it).

None of these strategies are effective if you’re not sure what’s wrong. That’s why recognizing when and where there’s a problem is so important. Engagement software can help you diagnose when you have an issue, and act quickly to address it.

17. Learn from employees leaving.

When employees leave, it’s usually for a reason. The best way to understand why? Ask them.

Use exit interviews to understand what’s causing your employees to leave. Then create targeted strategies to address those issues.

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