At a time when the bottom line is becoming top priority - the importance of both attracting and retaining top talent cannot be overstated. And research has shown one of the best ways to do this is to ensure your organisation’s leaders are performing at their peak, and with optimum efficiency.
Unfortunately, many managers and leaders aren’t fully engaged in their jobs. Even worse, disengaged leaders directly they people they manage. This is considered to be labelled the ‘cascade effect’; where an employee’s engagement is directly influenced by their manager’s engagement.
One of the best ways to prevent the ‘cascade effect’ and increase employee retention is by investing in leadership development. According to the Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL), improving leadership not only boosts employee engagement, but also increases the organisation’s ability to deal with holes in the talent pipeline. This, in turn, helps to significantly reduce the stress and costs associated with staff turnover and poor retention.
The importance of leadership
It is well known that respected and well-trained managers help to boost staff morale and employee retention. By improving your leadership development, organisations can also shape the culture and strategy of their business, as well as equipping their employees with the leadership skills needed to implement it.
Importantly, good leadership also creates real cost savings when it comes to hiring and firing - which as we all know, is hugely expensive. However, to help achieve a more engaged and stable workforce, leadership and management training must be conducted at all levels of an organisation, not just the executive level. The young managers of today will soon become the leaders of tomorrow, so if you are hiring leaders from outside rather than developing your own; questions need to be asked! For example, why are you not promoting your own young managers into leadership positions?
Running mentoring and coaching programs can also help boost employee morale and retention - transforming your organisation from a simple workplace, to a great place to work!
Also, by promoting from within, you can help your organisation move forward in previously unimagined ways. The ability to rise within the ranks of a business is also hugely motivating to your existing team, as well as making your business even more attractive to potential employees.
Areas that contribute to better staff retention include:
1. Encourage regular communication
Lack of communication is one of the major factors leading to employee attrition. Therefore, it is crucial for managers to regularly communicate with their employees, and to ensure they have everything they need. This is a vital part of having happy and stable employees - as well as giving them the right tools to do their jobs well
2. Provide regular, constructive feedback
As a manager and leader, it is vitally important to provide positive, constructive and active listening when meeting with staff. Remember to always give credit where it is due, and recognise the efforts that staff members have made. This could include going the extra mile, or anything else they have done for the general betterment of the team and the department
3. Make work more flexible
Although many employees may still be working the traditional 9-5 day, system, other options such as flexible hours, leave policies, and remote working are all gaining popularity. Flexibility helps to keep your employees refreshed and motivated, so as an ‘enlightened’ employer, if you can provide this flexibility; you will soon find some welcome changes in employee attitudes towards both their job, and the workplace
4. Encourage ‘continuous performance management’
This allows for timely, ‘real time’ feedback, and is thus usually more valuable than feedback delivered weeks, or often months, after the event. Today’s younger employees are also more used to this type of feedback, and deserve to receive it in the workplace. Also, by holding more frequent meetings, managers then have a better opportunity to step in and address performance issues. Lastly, of course, it helps to improve employee engagement and retention.
In conclusion, a happy employee is a stable employee.
Therefore, by addressing some or all of the above points, your organisation should be able to both improve staff retention; and create a better and more satisfying workplace.