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Employee Retention is Profit Retention



Talented star employees are an organizations greatest investor. They have chosen your company to "invest in." They invest their time, talent and hopes for the future. These stars are the ones who come to work everyday, are consisitently pleasant and communicate using empathy.

Never before have organizations relied so profoundly on their employees for competitive advantage. Oftentimes, the intellectual property of a company can be it's greatest selling factor, especially if that organization is in a purely service related market. If you are in a genuine service-oriented business whereby you sell no tangible product (for example, the medical, staffing, training, counseling fields), than you and your employees are truly what the client is buying.

Interestingly, when you realize what it takes to keep a long-term loyal client or customer, many of the same concepts apply to retaining loyal employees. Each want to be proud of their association with you, want your best advice, want to provided reliable information and follow-up, need your cooperative respect and want to be asked for their input. Consider my 5 'seCrets' of Employee Retention:

1. Collaboration: Your employees are formal representatives of you, your department and the entire organization. Oftentimes they are making the vital first impression" that will have the lasting impact upon an organizations success. Ensure they understand the honor of such power and wield it with pride. Most employees enjoy this power" of the team once it is understood and become great role models, and some of the best recruiters your organization ever had! ( Translation: "Allow me to collaborate with you so I can celebrate and share my pride in working here")

2. Coach: Are your people checked in, tuned in and turned on? Are you providing the essential coaching to developing and enriching their careers? Is it fun to come to work most days? Are you a mentor? A role model? ( Translation: "Help me to enjoy my work and grow professionally")

3. Contact : Are you providing clear and direct instruction as to specific accountabilities and job duties? Are you measuring performance on a consistent basis and in an objective and fair manner? Are you accessible? Do you listen well? ( Translation: "Tell me what you want, then step back, and let me do it. I'll probably exceed your expectations. Recognize me as often as possible. Once in a while, just say thank you. Measure how well I do, and appropriately reward, re-train or retire me!")

4. Cooperation : Are you building a team-based work environment that encourages diversity, respect, creativity and understands the need for work-life balance? (Translation: Please encourage me to tap the elements that make me different. Allow me to showcase my strengths. And oh, please remember I have roles outside my work that actually make me a more productive person while at work!")

5. Consult : Are you asking your star talent for their input? Are you asking them for ways to improve the organization? Are you asking them to assess your performance as a leader? Are you providing challenges? (Translation: "Trust my opinion, judgment and loyalty. Allow me to come up with solutions.")

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"Kristine, nobody I've seen yet can coach professionalism and soft skills like you! You continue to be big hit year after year with just about every officer. You receive very high praise, especially in helping them to become young professionals.  And, they remember you months after the training you deliver! I think it's kind of the "wow" factor and it works very well. 

- Kent Boggs | Oklahoma FFA Executive Secretary