The Business Holy Grail: Talent Retention
The ultimate ability for businesses in the twenty-first century is the capacity to attract and maintain the talent of people who live, work and evolve in a company. Individuals who, at a certain point, due to ambition or personal needs, need a change of scenery, leaving the business without a ‘quick replacement,’ subjecting them to a form of business infidelity.
When an expert resource defects, the business often loses more than the talent of one individual. It loses their experience – the product of transversal skills acquired in the sector, the product of observation, practice, and processing. Such abilities are hardly ever teachable through training in a formal sense.
Employee retention – the ability of a business to create strategies and policies to attract talent workers and to keep their talents for a long time – is truly a crucial detail for businesses in this century.
The largest problems facing businesses today are: the breakaway of talented employees, management of resources and the disheartenment and demotivation of staff.
“Why should I train an employee who, once having acquired that knowledge, puts it into practice for another business, possibly my competitor?”
Possible solutions for talent retention
The people working in a business can truly make the difference in terms of efficiency and can constitute a strong point for that group in terms of relations. This occurs when there is balance, collaboration and a sense of belonging within the group.
This is confirmed by the results of our quick poll of HR managers in different businesses, entitled The Importance of Human Resources for Business Innovation.
Given their specific experience, we asked which motivational techniques are most effective for maintaining a good relationship with current workers.
There were two main responses:
- Support the employee’s self-esteem by implementing their ideas
- Offer financial incentives to employees for reaching set targets and objectives.
It is clear that, before implementing an idea, it must be analysed, considered in detail, evaluated and assessed. This process must be carried out especially if the creator of the idea does not occupy a managerial position and is therefore not used to larger responsibilities for bigger tasks.
It is, however, true that those who perform the same jobs repeatedly are more likely to be aware of micro-problems to be addressed or organisational improvements to put into practice in specific situations.
The power of ideas and listening
When asked “which techniques or strategies would you suggest for promoting or stimulating business innovation,” more than half of those interviewed answered “collecting innovative ideas from operating personnel.”
Thus, HR managers claim to believe in the ideas of their staff. Ideas which emerge from individual talent and also their experience (granted by observation, practical work, imagination, etc.) which consists of constantly being in contact with everyday situations, recognising habits and sometimes problems to be solved.
To be able to do this, a non-technological skill is required: the capacity to listen to people. This is one of the fundamental strategies for maintaining talent. It is obvious that workplaces are living places, where people need to know that their needs and expectations are taken seriously.
Joint communication with employees is a crucial tool which can return incredibly positive results, such as:
- Creating a more relaxed and positive environment
- Increasing widespread perception of how people are valued
- Collecting content to be conveyed as a testimony of corporate wellbeing
- Discovering new business inspiration
The shortcomings of an intelligent tool
One of the routes most commonly taken when addressing staff “participation” for developing a business is the so-called “suggestions box.”
The problem with the first suggestions box systems was the poor handling of feedback, where there was no way to interact with producers and no systematic archiving methods.
The fundamental detail for the effectiveness of this tool is the suitable and efficient collecting, evaluating and carrying out of proposals.
Therefore, the objective is not to stimulate company staff with suggestions of “brilliant” and unrealistic ideas, but asking for proposals which can be transformed into projects which are:
- Aimed at increasing efficiency and economy within the business
- Aimed at engendering improvement in the quality of products and services
A poorly thought-out system can lead to a vicious circle in which ideas are “killed” quickly.
It starts with the launching of a process which is followed by the first suggestions and then the first actions are taken.
Next, suggestions grow exponentially, leading to saturation of the system, which in turn leads to a decrease in the relationship between actions proposed an actions implemented.
This tends to demotivate staff and hinder suggestions.
You can guess how it ends…
The necessary digital evolution
For comprehensive management through the entire life cycle of the idea, it is essential to use a digital tool which is specifically programmed to manage this type of situation.
A platform which considers these steps:
- Launching an ideas contest
- Receiving the first ideas
- Implementing the first actions
- Exponential growth of ideas
- Planned and organised management of ideas
- Creating a positive loop of staff motivation with concrete actions from management and communication of feedback on proposed and implemented actions
- Continuous improvement and starting a new idea life cycle