Managers need recognition, too! 3 steps for employee retention

Dear A Advisor,

I need your help! My company is having trouble with employee retention. We offer competitive salaries and we’re a strong competitor in our industry, but we just can’t seem to keep staff happy enough to stay with our company. What tools can we use to make our employees more satisfied and engaged?

Thanks for your help!

Mr. Lonely

Dear Lonely,

Employee retention can be a very difficult issue, but we do know that employees don’t leave jobs: they leave managers. The culture created by managers can make or break employee retention.

One of the most effective ways to combat employee loss is to hold managers accountable for the culture of their departments. Amongst a company’s leadership, managers should be the most in touch with the culture in their departments. Strategically encourage managers’ effective behaviors and hold them accountable for creating an atmosphere that facilitates employee retention.

There are three priority areas in which you can use your employee recognition program to strategically promote specific manager behaviours:

  1. Metrics and Efficiencies. Effective managers clearly define the goals for a department, and motivate teams with empowerment and encouragement. Recognize managers for successfully supporting their team in meeting their goals, whether monthly, quarterly, or yearly.
  2. Employee Development. Employee satisfaction can be measured when employees feel that their work facilitates the growth of their careers. Reward and recognize managers who host regular training and coaching and who take a proactive role in the professional development of their teams.
  3. Employee Satisfaction Scores. Regular employee satisfaction surveys can provide a significant amount of useful information on how employees perceive their managers. Reward managers with improved or consistently high employee satisfaction scores, and use the information gathered through the surveys to give specific feedback on your managers’ strengths and weaknesses.

Strategic recognition of managers can take the form of quantitative, concrete rewards, or qualitative feedback from directors, senior managers and other members of your leadership team. Managers can be your strongest assets for employee retention.

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