How Employee Turnover Provides an Opportunity to Strengthen Your Organization
Imagine you’re a leader who knows firsthand about the 4.5 million people who, according to a recent U.S. Department of Labor report, quit their jobs in March as part of the Great Resignation. You have several open roles within your organization, and your remaining employees are struggling with prioritizing their busy workloads while feeling stressed and burnt out.
Given the challenges around retaining talent today, it can be challenging to appreciate the opportunities accompanying an employee transition. But times of change can allow you to focus on building people-first workplaces where employees feel valued and are eager to stay.
It’s no secret that change has been taking place rapidly over the past two years, particularly when it comes to where, when, and how we work. As we move from the Information Age to the Age of Talent, your people are your organization’s most important commodity. Creating a people-first environment will help you attract and retain top talent who want to contribute to your ongoing growth and success. Check out these steps to help you leverage the opportunity for change and create a culture and workplace where talent wants to join, and employees want to stay.
Put Your Values Into Action
Today’s most successful organizations are built on purpose. They focus on why and how their organization – and each of the employees working there – contribute to making the community a better place. Employees want to work for companies that don’t just talk about their purpose but also take real action to make a difference. A purpose can unify your team behind the common good and common goals making daily work more meaningful.
One way to make your organization’s purpose come to life is to work with your employees to draw a direct line between the work they do and the contributions they make to your organization and the people your organization serves. Today, employees want to give back to the community and organizations that align with personal values, so make it clear how they can do just that.
Empower Staff and Listen to Their Feedback
People who use their strengths every day at work are six times more likely to be engaged on the job. That’s just one finding from research from Gallup, Inc., a global analytics and advisory company that has established a compelling connection between strengths and employee engagement in the workplace.
Leaders who empower their teams by encouraging them to tap into their strengths while offering flexibility for employees to do their job when they want, where, and how they want will set themselves apart. These leaders can demonstrate further commitment to empowering their teams by having ongoing one-on-one conversations to listen and learn about what is important to each employee in continuous growth and career development. They then take action on their input by creating a clear path forward for each role.
Communicate Often and Authentically
Be sure to evaluate your organization’s business operations and work plan regularly. Be as transparent as possible in your ongoing communications to minimize employee turnover. Be sure that you both communicate often and consistently.
Be careful that you don’t overwhelm your staff by implementing too many changes simultaneously, which can lead to frustration and apathy. Instead, take time to review any planned changes across your organization and create a thoughtful timeline and communications plan about any change going to be made. Be sure to include details about WHY the change is being made and adequate training for your teams. This will help build support for the difference, enhancing the overall adoption of the new behaviors you are looking for to be successful.
Provide Feedback Around Performance and Offer Stretch Opportunities
When staffing is lean, it’s more important to share consistent feedback on individual job performance. Take time to recognize and thank those employees who are performing well and putting in extra time and effort. Employees want to know what they are doing is providing a positive contribution to their organization, so ongoing recognition and appreciation will go a long way.
It’s equally important to consider your approach to working with employees who are not performing up to the organization’s standards. Act quickly and provide feedback for those who may not be meeting your expectations. Provide clear guidance and next steps to help move them toward success. If you find they are not a good fit for your organization, act quickly in making a staff change. In this example, making an employee transition can lead to a positive outcome, providing opportunities for stronger employees interested in taking on new challenges.
Focus On People-First to Drive Positive Results
Creating a people-first workplace isn’t a trend. It’s a critical way to operate your business, particularly when employees rethink what’s important to them and what kind of organization they want to work for. Focusing on your purpose and individual team members contributes to stronger employee retention, better business outcomes, better work-life balance, and more fulfilling careers.
Nick Stokes is the Sales Director at Salo.
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