Perhaps the important part of any company is its people, and so retaining top talent by keeping your employees happy may be the biggest secret to success. This can of course be a very competitive process. From executive chefs, to cushy hours, to in-office arcades, employers go to great lengths to attract and keep the best people. Here is a look at how to achieve this through leadership rather just than dollars.
5 Tips for Keeping Your Employees Happy
- Give your team permission to hold you accountable: Employers are always looking for ways to monitor employees and provide feedback. True leaders, however, open up that dialog the other way, and listen to top employee’s suggestions about their own performance. If you are willing to hear feedback about the direction of the organization, your employees are more likely to stick with you.
- Find ways to connect people’s jobs with their passions: Almost everyone would rather be doing something different than what they are doing in their current job. A great leader will try to identify that passion and connect it with the employee’s responsibilities. If one engineer loves to learn, provide them with opportunities to research best practices. If a programmer prefers interacting with people, let them present the team’s ideas to customers.
- Proactively provide opportunities: Many talented people become unhappy because they don’t see any room to grow. This might lead them to go elsewhere. Many managers only provide new opportunities when top employees complain or ask for a promotion. A good leader can curate new opportunities and provide them to their employees proactively. If you and your managers become this way, you will have much happier employees.
- Keep your team in the loop: Some companies operate on a need to know basis. Of course, you don’t want to waste the whole team’s time by pulling them in on a bunch of meetings that don’t involve them, but it’s a good idea to keep people in the loop about your big picture thinking. Talented people like to feel involved in a larger process. A difficult project might make more sense when they realize how it fits into a grander mission.
- Own your own imperfections: Nobody wants to work for the arrogant CEO who thinks he/she is perfect. If you make a mistake, own it. If there are areas where members of your team can outperform you, praise them and leverage their strengths. Provide the same level of accountability and honesty you expect from your team.
Hiring and keeping top talent can be difficult and expensive. Once you get someone dependable, the last thing you want is to lose that person because of poor management. Make a concerted effort to keep your employees happy and they will reward you with stellar performance.