I see a lot of managers, HR directors, and C level leaders asking "How can I increase employee satisfaction, engagement, and reduce employee turnover?" It completely baffles me that these questions keep coming, over and over again. The answers are simple, and I have to believe the people asking know them, but refuse to acknowledge them because it's inconvenient, perceived as expensive or just not as easy as punting the question down the road, saying, "We'll figure it out eventually."

In case you're not interested in reading my whole post on the matter, I'll put the answer right here:


1. Keep Your Talent

It is that simple. Your employees are not interested in after- work activities, trivia contests, one-on-ones, extra training, our social media account, your volunteer hours, or anything. crazy like that. You can say all day, "But Robbie, I'm a good boss, I talk to my employees and ask them what could make the workplace better, and nobody has ever said that to me." Well of course they haven't. What human in their right mind would tell their boss they want more money to do less work? They'll give you all of these other answers because, yes, they do make work more agreeable. But if, for one instant, a person thought they could say, "You know, just pay me more," they would. Let's face it, unless your company is some unicorn (And I definitely don't mean that in the Silicon Valley sense) that provides a person with joy just from doing their job, they are doing it because they want money. And more money is always better.

Do you offer competitive wages, but still keep seeing employees leaving for other opportunities? Have you ever asked them what they're making at those other jobs? I'd wager that it's more than you're paying them--that is, unless you have a seriously toxic workplace, in which case I don't know if anything can save you. Perhaps, instead of looking at what other companies are paying their employees and matching that, you should take the lead and pay more. Pay your employees so much that they can't afford to leave their job. The great thing is, you don't even have to do this right off the bat. You can hire an employee at a "competitive wage", and after a probationary period, give them a raise to a real wage, one that will keep them on your team. Keep your talent.

2. Attract New Talent

So you're keeping people you like, but you want more, eh? Well, that's also an easily solvable problem. And it's right in line with my last answer: Don't be competitive. Be a leader. Be the company everyone wants to work for. You don't have to have a sexy product or a big name to be a desirable employer. Once word gets out that you pay more than anyone else, you'll have your fill of qualified (And not-so-qualified) applicants who will be fighting for a spot on your team. But, since we live in a world where it's considered uncouth for people to talk about their wages, how can you get the word out that you're a great company? Why, with your world-class vacation package, of course!

3. Vacation Time, Sick Pay, and Holidays

Sorry, your 10 paid days off per year is not attracting talent. Even by U.S. standards, that's abysmal, but try posting a job opening overseas with that tripe and you'll be laughed out of the country. People need time with their families, and especially if you're requiring employees to use paid days off for things like doctor visits and every other real life issue that employees face, your "two weeks" quickly becomes a couple of days.

And let's not even begin to talk about employees with kids. Face it: You're not being generous and your employees know it. This actually wraps back around to keeping your employees. If you start off with twice as much time off as your competitors, your employees won't even think about going anywhere else. You've given them what they wanted: Which is to make more money and work less. Did I already say that? Maybe it's important or something...

Oh yeah, and a free lunch once in a while goes a long way.

Last edited 2019-04-08 | No changes yet

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