Leadership Management

Seven Mistakes to Avoid in Order to Boost Employee Retention

Retaining top talent is a major goal of employers, managers, and corporate executives around the globe. However, this is not a very simple concept and it may be more difficult for you as the manager to hold onto great employees than you’d think. There are countless mistakes that company leaders have made when it comes to employee retention.

However, these mistakes are easy enough to avoid if you know what traps to stay away from. Often, when you’ve made those mistakes over and over again, your best workers are the first ones to leave and take on a new job. The best and brightest employees tend to have more skills and opportunities within their field, which means they can quickly pick up another position at a different company.

If your company leaders are looking to prevent burnout and to improve their employee retention rates, then the leaders and managers at your organization will need to understand what mistakes they’re making that contributes toward workers leaving the company.

Below, we outline seven typical mistakes that managers have made that keeps employees from staying at the company.


Mistake #1: Too Many Rules Hurts Employee Retention Rates

Did you know that having too many rigid rules, policies, and expectations can hurt the employer-employee relationship? That’s right. It can damage employee retention rates as well. According to an article from the publication CIO, companies that have rigid workplace policies could lead to top talent leaving the company.

For example, professionals in the technological industries are expecting for more flexible scheduling and telecommuting opportunities from their employers.

“Flexible work time and the ability to be a virtual employee are so prevalent in today’s workforce that they are becoming an expectation,” Travis Furlow, a coach at Paperclip Thinking, told the news source. “The ability to work a flexible schedule can be a [great] way to retain professionals.”

One poll taken by the company Dice found that 63 percent of respondents would be willing to take a pay cut in order to telecommute half the time. Essentially, this survey found that working from home and flexible scheduling are the top benefits that tech professionals are seeking.

“This is a major demand we see from talent,” explained George McFerran, executive vice president at Dice. “And for organizations that can’t compete on salary to get that elite tech talent, offering remote and telecommuting options — even just part of the time or a few days a week — means they’ll be able to land those great hires.”

Additionally, you’ll find that employee retention will be low if you as the manager tolerate poor performance.


Mistake #2: Tolerating Poor Performance

You’ll also find that your top talent will not be pleased if you continue to keep poor performers or more lazy workers on the payroll instead of considering the hard work your best employees provide. If there is little room for advancement and your best workers see you spending more time on improving the skills of the worst performers instead of providing rewards and advancements for those offering the most, you may see your employee retention rates drop.

Additionally, the best workers are less likely to enjoy working with those who lack the willpower and skills necessary to get the job done. They may find themselves taking on the bigger workload and become resentful when working with those who refuse to put in the hours necessary to complete a project successfully.

Additionally, the corporate executives may not realize it, but they may have hired inferior managers, which is what may be leading to a lower employee retention rate.

“Most people don’t quit their jobs; they quit their managers,” Wendy Duarte Duckrey, vice president of recruiting at JPMorgan Chase, told CIO.

Getting a better handle on the management philosophy at your company could help improve employee retention. Managers will need to “invest time into discovering what each member of a team needs both at work and outside of work to do their job to the best of their ability,” explained Duckrey.


Mistake #3: Not Recognizing Accomplishments

Additionally, managers and employers who do not recognize workers’ accomplishments may be making one of the biggest mistakes because rewarding achievements and providing advancement opportunities are some areas that top performers expect. Without it, employee retention becomes unachievable.

According to Fast Company, there are eight typical ways that companies are failing to recognize their best employees and top talent. These ways include the following:

  • They make it about the money instead of creating a more meaningful connection and reward system
  • They include too many contents and competitive reward programs, which may lead to an overly competitive and even hostile work environment
  • Making far too many assumptions about what motivates employees instead of asking and communicating with their workers
  • Praise only comes from the highest offices instead of allowing direct managers to offer direct praise and rewards
  • Recognition occurs late in the game after workers have already moved onto new projects, which can fail to motivate them effectively
  • Performance reviews and praise sounds too generic and uses too many common phrases instead of using more specific wording and rewards for specific accomplishments or behaviors
  • Too much focus on very specific and hard goals instead of considering smaller accomplishments that support company values such as providing superior customer service skills when a client is unhappy with a service.
  • Utilizing an autopilot and “launched and forgotten” mode of recognition could make it harder to provide effective feedback for your employees.


Mistake #4: Failing to Care About Your Employees

Another major mistake that managers and company leaders may make is to fail to consider the lives and needs of their employees and, thereby, fail to care about their workers.

For example, according to a Harvard study cited by a Forbes article, companies around the country are not paying any attention to the number of workers who are caring for family members at home.

Employee retention in this situation is declining since staff members are leaving their jobs to care for these family members. The percent of workers who left their jobs to care for family were 61 percent in senior leadership, 53 percent of managers of a manager, 44 percent of managers of employees, and 23 percent of employees.

If top executives and company leaders spoke more freely with their workers, they may find out their needs such as caring for family. Afterward, managers and executives can work together to provide a more flexible schedule or allow such individuals to work from home for part of the week.


Mistake #5: Forgetting to Emphasize the Big Picture Among Employees

Another major issue when it comes to retaining your employees is to forget to show or emphasize the big picture to these workers. This involves having managers who are rather unprepared for their jobs of supervising employees.

Many could be talented at their individual skills, but unprepared to deal with the nuances of management, according to CIO. As such, it is a necessity to provide the training and guidance that will create managers able to lead their teams effectively.

“Organizations need to train people to be managers. Invest the time in developing, coaching and mentoring your managers,” said Furlow. “Too often, people are promoted into management and then are left to fend for themselves.”

Employee retention ideas need to include extensive training of both managers and workers. More time and money spent on training your workers can help them stay at your company for a longer period.

Essentially, if your mission is muddled and employees don’t understand company goals, it is likely they will be much less engaged in their jobs. It is vital for managers to emphasize the big picture and focus on the company’s mission.

Illustrating company values in their everyday supervisory role can also help employees gain a better understanding of the big picture. For example, if a company sells medical equipment, be sure to go beyond the profit gained and focus on the human lives saved or the number of hospitals that your company has developed relationships with.


Mistake #6: Failing to Drive Employees to Follow their Passions

Another major mistake that employers and managers make is to not let their workers pursue their passions. Wherever your workers seem to seek the most out of their job, encourage them to pursue these areas and to follow their passions.

When it comes to your talent management strategies, you can even use performance data to create learning opportunities for your employees that may get them more engaged with their job and find more passion in their day-to-day responsibilities.

Lastly, managers who fail to make things fun are making a major mistake that makes it harder for their company to retain top talent.


Mistake #7: Managers who Don’t Make the Job Fun

By creating a very serious or overly competitive and even hostile work environment, managers forget that workers enjoy having fun even during the working hours. Without any fun during the day, workers are much less likely to be engaged with their projects and day-to-day responsibilities.

For example, a 2018 Gallup report found that 53 percent of employees are not cognitively engaged with their workplace. These individuals will show up and do the bare minimum work, but will end up leaving the job if a slightly better offer comes along. As such, it is vital for employers to make work more fun and engaging for their workforce.

By avoiding these seven mistakes, you as the manager will be able to boost employee retention and keep employees that bring value to your company. You will no longer need to put as much funds into hiring and training new staff on a regular basis. One way to keep employees engaged and help employees pursue their passions is by investing in a project management tool that keeps your team motivated.


Runrun.it Software will Keep Your Team Engaged

You will find that Runrun.it project management software will be an excellent collaboration tool for your team. You’ll find this platform can keep your team engaged and motivated to pursue their projects and what they’re passionate about. Your communication will be more transparent with the use of Runrun.it software and workflow will be streamlined and straightforward.

To find out if Runrun.it software is the right choice for your organization, check it out by clicking here for a free trial.

Employee Retention

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