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Retention: A Big Challenge
Fundamental changes are taking place in the work force and the workplace that promise to radically alter the way companies relate to their employees. Hiring and retaining good employees have become the chief concerns of nearly every company in every industry. Companies that understand what their employees want and need in the workplace and make a strategic decision to proactively fulfill those needs will become the dominant players in their respective markets.
The fierce competition for qualified workers results from a number of workplace trends, including:
Concurrent with these trends, the emerging work force is developing very different attitudes about their role in the workplace. Today's employees place a high priority on the following:
To hold onto your people, you have to work counter to prevailing trends causing the job churning. Smart employers make it a strategic initiative to understand what their people want and need -- then give it to them.
This is not an exhaustive list, one can add or delete any of the below mentioned strategies. Secondly, the need of the hour is to have "right basics". Every individual is different, his needs are different, and his emotions, his problems are different. So, dear HR-Professionals.sit down and concentrate on your basics. I have classified retention strategies into two parts: Main and Ancillary.
Main Retention Strategies
First this is not an exhaustive list, one can add or delete any of the below mentioned strategies. Secondly, the need of the hour is to have "right basics". Every individual is different, his needs are different, and his emotions, his problems are different. So, dear HR-Professionals, sit down and concentrate on your basics.
Communications - Getting Your People To Care
Communication is the first step toward creating the kind of environment that people care about, and if they care, they just may stay. I'm not talking about a lot of New Age stroking designed to bring out the inner person or false praise that creates a misplaced sense of security. Instead, keep your people in the loop about what's happening with the company. At any time, all of your employees should have a pretty good idea of how business has been, and they should be aware of what issues the company is attempting to address.
That means that you regularly keep your people up to date with important events affecting the company. If November was good, let them know, and while you're at it, tell them what you expect to happen in December. Share good news, as well as points of concern. If you've got "issues," talk about them before they start making you crazy. And if they don't get resolved, figure out whether the problem stems from a couple of individuals or from your system.
The point here is that you want to treat these people as your partners, which they are. They may not have to worry about covering the payroll this week, but they do have worries of their own. Treat them with at least as much respect as they give you. As the call center's manager, you set the tone for the entire organization. If your salespeople, for instance, enjoy their encounters with you, they are much more likely to greet customers with a positive attitude. They are also much more likely to enjoy their work when they don't have a fire-breathing dragon looking to singe their butts.
Listen to your employees when they have ideas for improvement. Again, the benefits extend beyond just making people feel appreciated for their contributions. These are, after all, the people who do the work every day. They may have some ideas to improve productivity, and when they do come up with one, let everybody know where it came from. Post a "brag board" in your break room, or circulate an internal newsletter that touts these contributions. The pay-off is a contagious feeling of pride and, perhaps, some new efficiency that saves the company money.
Set Clear Expectations
If you are not having any expectations, how you are going to appraise, your employees? Yes, you are going to be biased, because you don't have set standards.The role of a CEO, HR Manager is like a director of a movie; choreographer of a stage show, where there is a defined role for each character, each participant.
Setting expectations initiates the process. Managers need to sit down with each employee and clearly define what's expected of them. Management consultant, Kenneth Philips, states that when expectations are not clear, employees may not be in sync with their job's current demands and priorities. Setting expectations is not a once and done activity. Jobs change. Priorities change. Resources change. Managers need to revise and set new expectations throughout the year. Setting expectations revolves around the following three areas:
Why is a setting expectation important? Quite simply, this process can be the cornerstone of improving the motivational climate within your sphere of responsibility. If your employees know what is expected of them, it allows them to focus on results and to monitor themselves against the set standards. Environments in which expectations are not clear, or change from week to week, seldom create high-performing work groups.
The three principles that should drive expectations are clarity, relevance, and simplicity.
Clarity. Expectations should focus on outcomes, not activities. In other words, you achieve clarity when you identify the expected results rather than the method for achieving them. Managers often make the mistake of attempting to direct the process that an employee will use rather than being clear about results. The advantage of identifying the outcome is that you, the manager, focus only on the goal; after all, the employee will develop the method for achieving the desired results. Defining the objective often requires some thought on the part of the manager because it is easy to fall into the "activities trap." While developing a strategic plan for a department or division is a worthy activity, it does not represent an outcome. In the activities trap, developing a plan is the goal, rather than increasing your market share.
Relevance. The principle of relevance helps define the "why" of the assignment. If your employees have a full understanding of the project's importance, they can make adjustments as unanticipated factors crop up within the process. They probably also will be more committed to the result because they can see more easily how it fits into the big picture and how their efforts impact the company. This understanding typically is accomplished through dialogue between the manager and subordinate, which allows for a more thorough review of the situation and for feedback and discussion. This process builds good will with the employee and sets the stage for additional responsibilities.
Simplicity. Simplicity creates a sense of grounding for employees as they endeavor to carry out assignments. If managers identify the work in simple, straightforward terms, employees will find it much easier to follow through on managers' wishes. To accomplish this, a manager must identify the key message in a fashion that the employee can embrace.
A research reports says that in today's scenario,
As you might be aware of Employee Reward covers how people are rewarded in accordance with their value to an organization. It is about both financial and non-financial rewards and embraces the strategies, policies, structures and processes used to develop and maintain reward systems. The ways in which people are valued can make a considerable impact on the effectiveness of the organization, and is at the heart of the employment relationship.
The aim of employee reward policies and practices, if any in your organization is to help attract, retain and motivate high-quality people. Getting it wrong can have a significant negative effect on the motivation, commitment and morale of employees. Personnel and development professionals will be involved frequently in reward issues, whether they are generalists or specialize in people resourcing, learning and development or employee relations. Keep following parameters in mind, while designing a reward policy:
Build A High Degree Of Recognition Value Into Every Reward You Offer
Recognition is the most cost-effective motivator there is. While the high cost of other rewards forces us to give them sparingly, recognition can be given any time, at very little cost.
Some very ordinary items and events can be imbued with extraordinary motivational significance, far in excess of their monetary value. I am constantly amazed at how motivating a pizza or movie tickets can be if is given with sufficient appreciation. A sincere thank you can be delivered at any place and at any time, costs absolutely nothing and can be more motivationally powerful than a substantial monetary bonus.
Organizations Can Provide Innovative Recognition In An Infinite Number Of Ways
For example, (A Hypothetical Incident) a small manufacturing company made its employees feel like heroes when they attained a major safety milestone - 100 days without a single accident. On the morning of day 100, it was announced that a catered lunch would be served the next day, if they made it to the 5:30 shift without an accident. At 5:15 anticipation was building. Managers took confetti and streamers to the balcony overlooking the shop floor. When the 5:30 whistle blew, there were congratulations all around, confetti flew through the air and banners were unfurled. It was a great moment for everyone - and one that was not soon forgotten. The recognition value of this celebration was extremely high, while the monetary cost was relatively low.
Highly motivating organizations even celebrate small successes. A health-conscious company distributes fruit bowls to employees' work areas when key personal milestones are attained. Another company uses a more fattening approach: fresh-baked chocolate-chip cookies to say thank you.
Reduce Entitlements And Link As Many Rewards As Possible To Performance
Clearly the traditional "pay for loyalty" systems in most organizations need to be changed. Don't let attendance be your major criterion for rewards. Most employees resent those who only put in their time and yet receive the same reward as those who go the extra mile. Today's employees have higher expectations for what work can and should be, and they want to receive rewards that reflect their personal efforts and contributions.
This is why so many companies are moving toward performance-based rewards, including performance bonuses, gain-sharing and non-monetary recognition. Although not a panacea, companies are finding that these new reward systems do allow them to give substantial rewards to those who really deserve them. Smart organizations are looking for opportunities to reduce across-the-board entitlements, and thereby find more resources for discretionary performance-based rewards, without increasing the total cost of rewards.
Date Published : 7/18/2005 re-published with the permission of ContactCenterWorld.com http://www.contactcenterworld.com/
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