Relationship Skills are Essential for Decreasing Employee Turnover

All businesses experience employee turnover; with this turnover being a costly proposition. It includes time and financial resources for screening, interviewing and vetting a new employee. Then – once a new employee is hired, it costs a company at least 2 times (give or take) the new employee’s salary to thoroughly train them.  During this training process, the new employee’s productivity rate is low because they are just beginning to learn the ropes.

Contrary to what people assume, many employees do not leave their current employment situation because they feel they are underpaid – although this might be a contributor.  Research shows that employees overwhelmingly leave companies because they feel they are not valued – not just as an employee but as a person.  This is related to the fact that many companies have not invested the time and/or money to develop and sustain an authentic relationship with their employees – making them feel not only undervalued but also – easily replaceable.

Following are 3 simple relationship skills needed to develop a relationship with your employees that will decrease employee turnover.

1. Listen and learn so you can develop a positive healthy work environment for your employees.  Learn where the toxic employees are and weed them out.  Regardless of how much capital some toxic employees produce, these negative people are not to be tolerated! Period!

The way to do this is to have consistent informal communication with your team that gives you a sense of everyone’s morale. If you find low morale, rather than ignoring this situation, take the time to dig just a little bit deeper to see if you can find the source – and then take swift action to eradicate it. If morale is related to your team being overworked – acknowledge that you are aware of this situation and let them know it is temporary (if it is) and that you appreciate their efforts.  Do not under-estimate how far it goes to let someone know you appreciate him or her.  Provide team building exercises and lunch and learn activities related to the employees interests that are not specific to their work function – helping to boost morale.   Doing this little bit extra will go a long way in retaining your employees.

2. With three to four generations working collaboratively together, make sure you understand what motivates each of them and how to best communicate with them.  It would be a fatal mistake to think the Millennials value the same thing from work as Baby Boomers do – because this is not true.  For example, Millennials care deeply about their work having purpose and meaning – they do not just work for monetary gain – as the Baby Boomers might.  Learn the differences among the values and motivations of these generations and then act accordingly to meet their needs beyond financial compensation.

3.  Respect everyone and foster a respectful work environment where bullying is not tolerated.  You might not have to like everyone you work with but it is important that you nurture a company culture where everyone respects each other.  Employees don’t have to necessarily like each other, but it is imperative that they respect each other if you want each employee and team to reach its greatest potential.

Stephen Covey, the best selling author of: “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” stated that all success begins with relationships. In our highly competitive global economy, the ability to develop and sustain authentic relationships is tantamount to keeping your career- and your company – ahead of the curve!

The Place For Relationship Tools For Success In Business and Life,

Dr. Patty Ann


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