As of February 2021, there were 7.4 million job openings.

Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many people who would have moved on to new during the year did not. As such, that pent-up turnover will likely hit organizations in 2021 as many workers look for new pastures.

To help you retain good employees in the face of increasing churn, here is a primer on six crucial ways you can prevent losing your workers. 

Keeping Good Employees Starts Before Recruiting

Most managers deal with employee attrition at the point workers are leaving. But that’s not the focal point that matters most. Sure, you need to look at your organizational culture and how it impacts employees.

However, you influence employee attrition long before any worker ups and leaves.

The brand and reputation your organization has will draw a particular type of worker. As such, you need to continually cultivate the internal ‘customer experience’ as you nurture the outward-facing one.

On top of that, your recruiting process matters a lot when it comes to attrition. If you don’t look at the culture you want to build and let it direct you to who to hire, you’ll keep battling high employee attrition.

Before recruiting begins, assess your strategy and culture to tease out the aspects you’d like to emphasize. As interviewing begins, work to uncover candidates who embody these aspects and bring them onboard.

You’ll end up hiring employees who want to stay with the organization. The more they stay with the firm, the more productive they become over time, making it a win-win. 

Get to the Root of Your Turnover

For some firms, looking back to the starting point may be too little too late. Staffers are leaving at alarmingly high rates, and the priority is in first stemming the tide.

In such a context, you need to conduct genuine organizational soul searching. Mine your exit interviews, anecdotes, and other additional information to uncover why team members are leaving.

Since it’s clear your current employee strategy and culture are failing, you’ll need a significant overhaul. Without that, you’ll only attract new people who’ll come to face (and be put off by) the same old issues. 

Set Clear Performance Expectations

Why do good employees get fired? Part of it is when they fail to meet expectations. While this is true for some workers, there is a whole slew of employees who couldn’t meet performance expectations because the goalposts kept changing.

These are the employees who, after joining the organization, feel that the job description put out was quite different from their day-to-day reality. That’s one point when good employees stop caring.

Not having clear goals causes stress among your workers. One moment they know what the target is, and in the next moment, they are being judged according to a different set of expectations.

To retain exceptional workers, you need to lay out crystal clear performance expectations and stick to them. When you show consistency in supporting your team to hit their targets, you’ll have more satisfied workers. 

Let Your Team Know You Listen to Them

One fundamental you should never forget about your workers is this — they are humans and not machines. Your workers grapple with feelings, desires, and fears common to humanity, and that includes validation.

If your workers feel you don’t listen to them, it’s only a matter of time before they walk out. No human being will give their best and wake up every morning primed to connect with a manager who minimizes them.

So, what are you to do?

Develop a genuine open-door policy. Be reachable to your workers to help them not feel inferior, even if you are their manager. When team members offer up ideas, commit to genuinely engaging with their suggestions.

Most reasonable employees have no issue having their ideas shot down if they aren’t up to par. And if you have a team that’s emotionally engaged with the job enough to offer up suggestions, brushing them off is a death sentence.

A handy tip to regularly help your employees feel valued is to hold ‘stay interviews.’ These are the opposite of the exit interview, and the goal is to find out why workers choose to stay with you.

You should also use such interviews to unearth factors that would make your staff leave the organization. That gives you precious insight into how you can shape your organizational culture to keep your team inspired and productive. 

Thoughtful Quarterly Evaluations

Quarterly evaluations are a management staple, and that’s because they are vital in helping employees achieve their full potential in the workplace.

When thinking of quarterly evaluations, though, you should conceptualize less dressing down and more conversation. The staff needs to feel you empathize with them when discussing areas they need to improve in.

You catch more flies with honey, and as such, making the review a one-on-one conversation eliminates any underlying tension. Don’t forget to ask the employee what they need to achieve the set goals as that inculcates ownership with them.

As long as you handle your quarterly evaluations well, you should see an uptick in employee engagement and the attendant rise in productivity.

Another welcome bonus here is increasing the firm’s brand equity in the employee’s eyes, which increases retention. 

Recognize Accomplishments

Do you feel appreciated when the company recognizes your managerial successes? Your team experiences similar emotions when you acknowledge their achievements too.

There are many ways you can make employee appreciation a part of the office couture. However, you do it, ensure you tie the accolades to how they set and achieve their performance targets.

Very few incentives will measure up to genuine appreciation anytime a team member delivers for the organization. Do it and watch your retention numbers soar. 

Keep Your Workers Happy

Hiring and training new employees is an expensive and time-consuming affair. In a job market with more people than ever looking to switch jobs, retaining your good employees is crucial to success.

Focus on creating an enabling culture, empowering your employees, and meeting their psychological needs to push your retention numbers up.

Keeping your workforce going amidst a pandemic is no mean feat. Our website features business and management information to help you better engage your staff. Check out more of your content for ideas and insight on how you can retain your top workers.