Retaining Your Employees During Challenging Times
February 3, 2023 – The Great Resignation took many companies by surprise and led to a new competition for talent. While turnover is expected to slow in 2023, a recent survey showed that 65 percent of employees are looking for a new job. So, what’s making employees leave, and what will make them stay?
Ultimately, employees today are more empowered to choose where and how they work, according to a report from DHR Global’s Christine Greybe, Jonathan Hoyt, Maryanne Wanca-Thibault, and Tim Wiseman. “And while some employees continue to look for more pay and flexible hours, many desire to work for a company that shows their employees that they are valuable and needed,” the report said. “They want a defined career path, advancement, recognition, and to feel like they belong.”
Specifically, 73 percent of people left a company if they felt their employers’ beliefs didn’t align with their own, according to a report from Cengage. In DHR’s conversations with both employers and employees, the firm found that retaining your best employees boils down to a few foundational concepts:
Capture Hearts and Minds with Core Values
An organization’s culture is critical for employee retention. “Employees today want to understand how they fit into the larger purpose of the organization and how their contribution makes a difference,” the report said. “Companies need to be clear about the organization’s purpose and values, and leaders need to model the culture every day.”
Related: Transforming Corporate Culture and Driving Performance in the New Workplace
In a separate DHR survey of HR professionals, 84 percent said they feel that a positive culture is one in which behaviors align with core values. DHR research found that the big challenge for companies is to create a culture where people feel like they belong and are making an impact while working in a remote or hybrid environment. “Leaders can create a more inclusive environment by tailoring the cultural expectations to individual needs,” the report said.
Companies with a more flexible culture are winning. DHR notes that employees have had time to think about what’s important to them in their work and personal lives and now expect more choices and more autonomy. “It will be necessary for leadership to think about creating experiences that are true to the culture, and individualized,” the report said. “Consider offering employees flexibility in their schedule like a four-day work week and work-from-home options. And re-evaluate how work is done and how people work together. The employee experience is no longer a one-size-fits-all.”
Provide Clear Opportunities for Growth
Employees are looking for career growth potential; they want to feel like they are being invested in and need to see and feel the development path ahead of them. “Leaders can motivate employees through new challenges, coaching, and offering tuition assistance for degrees and certificates focused on the skills they are trying to learn to achieve greater success,” DHR said. “It’s essential that leaders clearly show employees how they can grow and succeed and provide opportunities for different career paths, including offering stretch roles. They also need to hold people accountable through goal setting and provide honest feedback if it’s not working.”
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
DHR also explains that how leaders communicate with employees has changed, especially in a remote or hybrid environment. If you are a team leader that doesn’t get together on a day-to-day basis, it’s hard to read cues and build a deep connection. DHR pointed to a study by ADP Research that found that employees with a strong connection to their organization are less likely to leave. “Consider how you create an inclusive environment and show employees that they have a future in the organization. Make people feel heard,” DHR said. “Listen to your people, ask good questions, and get good feedback. Ask your team how they want to be engaged in making themselves and the company succeed.”
Since 1989, DHR Global has been a leading, privately held provider of executive search solutions with more than 50 wholly owned offices spanning the globe. The firm’s consultants specialize in all industries and functions, providing senior-level executive search, management assessment, and succession planning services.
How to Build an Inclusive Company Culture
Diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts go nowhere unless organizations put their words into action. Building and maintaining an inclusive culture requires a proactive approach. In a new report, DHR Global offers some suggestions for demonstrating DEI and making it the centerpiece of your company culture.
President of DHR Leadership Consulting, Ms. Greybe leads a global team of consultants who help organizations identify and develop executives who are ready to take on high-stakes, high-pressure and high-complexity decisions. As an executive search consultant, she helps public and private companies recruit leaders across the C-suite and board and for key functional roles. Ms. Greybe joined DHR in 2004 as managing director of Asia-Pacific and has held roles of increasing corporate responsibility, including as a member of the board of directors, president, and head of global. Her services include assessment and coaching, succession planning, team effectiveness, onboarding, and DEI.
Mr. Hoyt, a partner in leadership consulting, helps clients improve performance through executive coaching, succession planning, talent assessment and organization design. He has spent the last 20 years helping organizations create the leadership capability they need in times of rapid growth and change. His clients have included private equity, technology, financial services, natural resources, professional services, non-profit, and healthcare organizations around the world.
Ms. Wanca-Thibault has more than 30 years of experience as a consultant and advisor in the areas of leadership assessment, organizational development, and executive coaching. As a partner of DHR Leadership Consulting, she helps clients assess fit for executive, C-suite, and board positions. Her focus on the people-side of the organization comes from a deep interest in organizational behavior, communication, and helping professionals maximize performance.
Mr. Wiseman is a managing partner in its leadership consulting practice. He is based in Hong Kong and heads the firm’s leadership consulting services in the APAC region. Mr. Wiseman helps organizations assess, retain, reward, and develop their people. He focuses on the design, build, and deployment of large-scale, organizational-wide talent management solutions across multiple sectors including technology, professional services, financial services, chemical, retail, pharmaceutical, engineering, and construction.
Related: Retaining Your Employees During the Great Resignation
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media