Small Business Growth: Employee Retention with Increased Productivity

Get the Right Attitude

Employee perspective and attitude are key to increased performance and productivity, especially in an office with technical work such as computer programming for example. If a person treats employment as just a job to show up at every day, do some minimal work and get paid, it will show. The work will be substandard, customers will complain, and co-workers will wonder why they have to deal with such a peer. Disney makes it a point when the employee walks on the grounds he has to be in the right mindset; it’s a job requirement. They’re rules include:

  • Present a positive energy at all times
  • Behave courteously and with respect to all guests, including children
  • Stay in character at all times
  • Always do more than the basic expectation

When an employer makes it clear the employees are to meet the above standards every day, the staff understand doing less can mean losing a job. However, more importantly, they arrive in the workplace committed to do more than the minimum. They don’t have to then be pushed to do so.

Value Matters

An employer can’t expect people to regularly perform above par without acknowledging the effort. Employees burn out and they begin to question what the effort is for. That said, acknowledgement doesn’t need to be in the form of a pay raise.

Instead, make someone feel valuable can done through added responsibilities in roles, saying thank you for efforts made, giving tokens of performance credit such as awards or certificates, and providing training for new skills and challenges that may interest the employee. All these things combined can be performed with simple technology and office software as well as in person. People stay in their jobs where they feel valued; they leave because of how they are treated by other people.

Employees are People Too

Remember the old saying learned as child, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you?” The same principle applies to employees. If employers want their staff to treat customers with grace, respect, and helpfulness, the same treatment needs to be provided to the staff by their employer. Where staff feel ignored, abused, berated, or cheated by their employer, they will many times unconsciously begin to treat customers the same way. This can snowball into loss of business and a bad business reputation quickly. One of the more traditional ways to value employees is to provide them a good benefits package; that includes employer sponsored disability insurance and healthcare coverage.

Training of line managers goes a long way in avoiding this problem. Because line managers have the most contact with staff daily, they have the most impact on the morale of employees. Line managers have to be trained to understand their roles, how they lead staff, how staff signal discontent, and how to solve problems before they get big. This then avoids employee abuse that manifests into frustration in the workplace.

Offer Opportunities to Grow

People stay in careers and positions where they feel their investment provides the ability to grow and improve their lives. As a result, seemingly dead-end jobs frequently suffer high turnover because employees in them don’t see any reason to stick around for long.

Every position in a business, even a small one, should be planned with some sort of eventual track to improve the employee in it for bigger and better things in the company. This can then become a performance goal to achieve, incentivizing the employee to not only stay but perform better to get promoted.

Employers can do a lot to encourage their good employees to stay in the company, even in small businesses. Companies pay for car insurance for business vehicle use as a normal course of operation, so why not invest in retention “insurance” for keeping good employees?

Many methods don’t require a great expense outlay or having to hire a retention officer dedicated to just preventing people from quitting. The trick to it all is to think smart in personnel retention planning and make employees feel like they are a valued part of the company and important to its mission.

Author Bio: Jessica feels strongly about employers taking care of their employees. She currently works for an online car insurance company for business owners. She is married and has two kids.

Sean Hopcraft

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