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Part 3: How to Energize Employee Loyalty

Part 3: How to Energize Employee Loyalty

From Monster Intelligence

As most employers find out after the fact, once employee loyalty is gone, it’s hard to repair that rift.  Given their current frame of mind, employers are likely to learn a difficult lesson of employee retention gone wrong.

As we noted previously in the article Employee Loyalty, The Perfect Storm…, more than 50% of employees have no allegiance to their company, a condition caused in large part by the economic downturn.

Now that the economy is turning around, many employers are trying to retain top employees, workers who might have one foot out the door.

Of the employees surveyed by Monster, the top reasons those surveyed would stay at a company are:

a. Being part of a “family”
b. Feel more valuable as a worker
c. They get to be treated as an individual
d. They can make a bigger impact
e. They want opportunities to learn and learn by doing a variety of roles

Most of these are easy fixes to improve employee retention can be achieved by making some small organizational changes.

Employee Retention: Make them an Offer They Can’t Refuse
According to Monster research, one of the top reasons that employees look for new jobs is for a higher salary or better benefits. Yes, once they do find a new job, you can always counter offer, but counter offers are usually too little, too late, especially if they found a job they really love.

It’s easier — and possibly cheaper — to give them a little salary bump or some extra benefits before they even start looking. Giving them a little monetary “good job” unprovoked employee recognition helps them feel appreciated and will keep them from looking for greener pastures.

Listen to What They Have to Say
All any employee wants is to feel like they are making a difference at the company. According to the Monster survey, 77% of employees would like to see better leadership at their company, and the biggest part of leadership is managing employees.

Something as simple as listening to your employees – their ideas or concerns — is enough to feel like they matter. Is one of your employees having an issue with a coworker? Mediate the situation. Do they keep coming to you with crazy ideas that would never work for your company?

Keep listening. Even if 99% of their ideas are unusable, they could have that one brilliant idea that they might never share if they feel they aren’t being listened to.

Create a Fun, Family Atmosphere
If employees enjoy going to work, chances are they aren’t going to be looking for another job. Over three quarters of employees say they value a better company culture at their job.

You don’t have to be Zappos to create a great corporate culture. Simple things like adding soda machines in the kitchen or designating a break room with video or board games to give employees down time will go far in creating a relaxed and accommodating company culture. Create a monthly happy hour or other off site team building exercise.

If your employees are able to bond with their coworkers, they will be more enthusiastic about their job.

Provide Career Advancement
Career advancement is one of the most important factors for happiness in a job, according almost 90% of employees surveyed. Workers can feel stale or stagnant if they stay in a job too long. Having the ability for either vertical movement within their department or horizontal movement around the company will help employees feel like they have options.

If you aren’t offering your employees opportunities to gain fresh experiences at your company, they are going to look elsewhere for those opportunities.

Retaining top employees, especially after a difficult economic downturn, can be an uphill battle, but it doesn’t have to be.

Simple solutions that make your employees feel valued will create a sense of loyalty to the company and appreciation for the job they have.

Previous articles in this series:

Part 1: Today’s Workforce and the State of Employee Loyalty

Part 2: Employee Loyalty: The Perfect Storm of Worker Discontent