Caring for your best talent

I’ve heard it a lot in my last three years of job hopping. It doesn’t matter if you’re as big as Microsoft and Expedia or a small, thriving business, finding good talent is a tough act. What’s even harder is getting the good ones to stick around, because if you’re not noticing them, your competition definitely is.

Today we’re going to dive into how you, as a business leader, can identify, build and recognize your best people so you can have a better chance at keeping them around.

Be as flexible as they are worth

I recently read a story from one of Forbes’ contributors about how one of his best employees couldn’t take Ohio’s cold weather and had to move back to sunny Florida. Instead of leaving, they leveraged modern cloud technologies to create a remote workplace for her to do her job.

Just because your talent is elsewhere, doesn’t mean you abandon all hope of making them stay where they don’t want to be. If they’re worth it, look into how you can use this growing example to retain your top talent.

Pay everyone fairly

Unless you’ve been stubbornly plugging your ears and closing your eyes every time someone brings up fair pay, you know what I’m talking about. Still, a Wall Street Journal examination of 446 major U.S. occupations found 439 of those jobs are paying women considerably less than their male counterparts. If you are one of these companies, I strongly urge you to remedy this situation. Your employees and your PR will appreciate it greatly.

Give recognition with rewards

A 2015 study by Blackhawk Engagement found only 42 percent of employees were happy with the rewards and recognition their company offers. A majority of people like being recognized with gift cards, not a pat on the back or a well-placed “Good job” meme. The study found 81 percent of employees who received gift cards used their rewards to purchase practical, everyday items.

Make them feel wanted

We all want to think our skills make us great at what we do. That starts with making us known around the water-cooler for completing some high-profile project like no one had ever seen. According to Entrepreneur Magazine, you can accomplish this by setting goals for your employees. When they reach their goals, praise them to the office and let them bask in their glory.

Fuel their curiosity

You should never tell your talent something isn’t achievable or discourage them otherwise from pursuing an idea for your company. I currently thrive at my job because my manager let’s me pursue pretty much anything I want, and it makes me want to work harder for her. In addition, by enabling people to do more and work with them to make it happen, you’re increasing your transparency and getting a chance to see how these talents can grow professionally and personally.

If you feel like your top talents keep slipping away from you, give these tips a try. They might help keep them around and make your company stronger.

How do you try to keep your employees around?

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