Every business wants to build a team of super-star, high performing employees.
Finding and attracting them is only part of the challenge as, if you just stop there, you will find that another business who also seeks high performers will soon come knocking on their door.
As businesses, we therefore need a clear strategy to engage and retain those rockstar employees.
1. Constant Challenges
According to the author of Recruit Rockstart, Visit Jeff Hyman, the best employees will require constant challenges if you have a hope of retaining them long term.
Most likely your high performing employees have excelled because they are constantly seeking new challenges in order to learn, grow and improve themselves. The most their day job becomes routine and they don’t feel they have the opportunity to continue this pathway to growth, they will quickly become dissolution and open to employment change.
Obviously the best way to provide constant challenges is to make sure high performing employees are considered first for promotional opportunities without your business and that you have spent time coaching them on the new skills they will need prior.
However, when promotions are not available or your high performer is not quite ready for the next step, you should consider offering them a ““Stretch Assignment”. These are projects or tasks, often short-term in nature which is beyond the employees current knowledge or skills level with the goal of “stretching” employees developmentally. This will allow employees to step outside their normal duties and expand their business knowledge.
2. Career Path
A recent study by LinkedIn showed that career opportunity is the top reason people change jobs with 45% of people leaving their job due to lack of opportunities for advancement, and 59% accepting a new job for a strong career path with more opportunity.
Therefore it follows that if you have any hope of keeping your rockstar employees, they need to feel confident they have a career path with the opportunity for additional responsibility and compensation.
As Carter Cast, a clinical professor of innovation and entrepreneurship commented: “It’s important to put your arm around them and say, ‘I think you have a lot of potential, and one of my key jobs is helping you reach your potential. I will get satisfaction out of helping you do that.”
Whilst formal training is great, most high performers grow due to finding a strong mentor they admire who can give them regular feedback.
High performing employees thrive on one-on-one mentor interaction on a regular basis where they can seek guidance and ask questions on areas of their role they want to improve on.
More money still made this list. I believe money is not the most important factor to retain high performing employees but it is still important.
High performing employees often see compensation as not only extra dollars in their pocket but also a clear sign from management that they are valued and noticed.
The best approach, is when the opportunity and timing is right to offer pay increases, don’t just share a blanket 5% increase across the team evenly and instead make sure you offer the highest percentages to your best employees. This not only rewards your high performing employees but sends a message to less well performing staff what is expected from them if they want similar financial recognition.
High performing employees are hard to find let alone keep. Once you have one within your business, make sure you put in place strategies to keep them happy and engaged. If they grow with your business for a long period, its a win-win for all.
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