Employee retention is top of mind for business leaders in 2017. A recent study conducted by Future Workplace and Kronos found that 87 percent of employers have identified “improvement in retention” as a critical priority. The mindset that all employees are replaceable may have been popular in past decades, but it is no longer a viable strategy. As a leader, you already know that:
- The market for talent in many industries is highly competitive.
- Team member consistency increases effectiveness and productivity.
- Customer relationships can be put at risk when employees change.
- Turnover is expensive.
We have discovered that some subtle changes can make a big difference in how employees think about staying or leaving. Data from our employee surveys gathered across multiple industries points to two key workplace factors that seem to influence retention:
- Co-workers’ motivations to go above and beyond
- Co-workers’ tendencies to speak positively about the company and its customers
Not surprisingly, the attitudes and actions of employees directly impact the experience of others around them. How? Employees who show a willingness to go above and beyond often build trust among team members. Similarly, our data shows that the more employees hear positive sentiments about the company, coworkers, and customers, the more likely they are to feel positive about their experience at the company.
It makes common sense. Who wants to stay with an organization where the motivation and commitment of others is in question? Or work in an environment where people speak poorly of one another, the company, or customers?
The good news? Managers can initiate change by modeling the behaviors they want to see and by strategically recognizing those who follow suit. Once employees realize the benefits of modifying their words or actions, they may be willing to change. Positivity can spread throughout the organization, having an impact on employee engagement, the customer experience, turnover, and the company’s bottom line.
It’s certainly something worth talking about.
(In partnership with the experts at Brand Integrity, we at Bonadio now offer services for organizations that would like to improve their employee-retention programs. Please contact any Bonadio representative for more information.)
Bruze Zicari is a partner based out of our Rochester, NY office.