Byam, managing partner at the employee recognition firm The Terryberry Company, offers eight keys to successful retention:
1. Start Retaining on Day One
The first week of a new job is an extremely impressionable time, and it represents an important opportunity to build a productive and fulfilling relationship between the new employee and the business. (At Founders Bank & Trust, President Laurie Beard personally meets with every new employee and presents him or her with a Welcome Aboard award.)
2. Exhibit Continuing Confidence
Remember, says Byam, that one of the best and most motivating forms of recognition you can provide is your continuing confidence in your employees’ ability to meet new challenges. Dare to believe in them fully and keep raising the bar by coming up with new assignments that test their skills and their creativity.
3. Try to Include Significant Others
Whenever possible, involve co-workers' significant others in recognition events and other important career moments. Byam says that you'll be sending a powerful message: "We value you and your family, and we want to keep you with us."
4. Keep Asking About Goals and Aspirations
How can you know what will motivate and inspire employees if you don't ask? From time to time, take a valued employee to lunch and use the time to pose several key questions. What do you like most about your job? What is your most exciting and thrilling challenge? If you could go anywhere you wanted in this organization, where would it be?
5. Encourage and Reward Career Growth
Support your employees' desires to acquire new skill sets and don't miss the opportunity to acknowledge those achievements, suggests Byam. A more highly trained workforce stands a better chance of succeeding in the global marketplace.
6. Blow the Trumpet for Your People
Get the word out about successful workers and their accomplishments. Imagine how proud your employees will feel when a neighbor or buddy comments about seeing their accomplishments highlighted in the newspaper, Byam says.
7. Find Interesting and Entertaining New Ways of Saying Thanks
Make sure everybody in your organization gets to participate in the recognition experience, Byam says. In North Andover, Massachusetts, a large retirement community recently came up with a fun bingo-based recognition game. When one of their employee teams reaches a production or service goal, they reward the entire staff by launching a day-long bingo game.
8. You Get What You Reward
Want your employees to stay with your organization? Show them that their service is valued and appreciated by recognizing it, says Byam. Successful organizations build employee relationships that are fulfilling for their people and for the business.
Read more on this topic and other HR best practices at the HR Daily Advisor.