Holding on to your staff is extremely crucial for success in your business. Your efforts to train them, will be lost if they leave you and go within a few months/ years. At Jain Ceramics, as a working partner, I have been able to retain the core staff for almost 10 years now. Here are some suggestions out of my experiences –
- Trust – This is the most crucial thing. I have seen many businessmen look at their staff with doubts. Identify your core people. Once they are your core, trust them unless there is a serious loophole you come across
- Appreciate – Praise them for good work they do. Do not think that they might become over confident. Few words of appreciation and recognition of their contribution motivates them to do more
- Help when needed – They will invariably have some unforeseen urgencies. Go all out and help them. Only if the are at peace, will their best come out at the workplace
- Empathize – Sometimes they might ask for leaves due to circumstances. Instead of making their life difficult, empathize with them and suggest the best way of handling the situation. Work out a mutually best solution to ensure that your business doesn’t suffer, and even they have a way out
- Money is not the best practice – If an employee is working with you sheerly because you are paying higher, they are not long-term people. They will hop across the moment someone else pays higher.
- Give more than just money – Apart from salary, an important question is – what more are you giving them? Eg: share things with them, which they would otherwise not learn, teach them meditation, organize seminars/ trainings, talk with them to understand their issues, ask them what can be improved at office, take their suggestions on your working style, etc.
- Implement their suggestions – Don’t just ask them for suggestions and conveniently ignore them. Those suggestions, which are workable and makes sense for you – commercially and logically must be implemented. Sometimes their eyes look at things from angles, which we as business owners might miss
- Create excitement regularly – You should be able to create enough reasons for them to come to work. Things like picnics, activities, lunches, movies, social causes etc help the team to bind and create excitement at workplace. This needs to be a regular practice and just not once a year
- Elevate internally – People who work sincerely and have given enough years for you, should be elevated within the organization. This boosts morale of other employees
- Give freedom – Everyone has their style of working, which might be different than yours. Don’t emphasize on people to adopt your style. Give them freedom to work their way as far as they are achieving results
- Allow mistakes – If you want to create your second line, allow people to take decisions by themselves. Even if they ask you for solutions, do not give. Ask them to handle the situation. It might lead to some losses. But, that’s how they will learn and grow. When they know that the boss is with them, they will earn you good profits and goodwill in near future
- Be accessible – They should have direct access to you. If your organization is large, atleast one member from every department should be able to get in touch with you directly
Keeping your staff happy and motivated might not be as difficult and most people make it to be. The issue comes when people don’t want to do above-mentioned basic things for them, but expect great results. It is like not depositing money in your bank account, but wanting to withdraw every single day.
Rate yourself as 0 and 1 on above pointers. Give yourself 0 if you sometimes do and sometimes don’t do. Give yourself 1 if you always follow the pointers. Out of the 12 pointers, if you get 10 or more, you will see that your staff invariably stays with you. Anything less than 10 means you have to keep looking for new staff all the time.
Investing time for your staff is the best investment you can ever do!
… always upgrading!