Whether you own a Fortune 500 company or have a startup company, your overall success greatly depends on your employees. It’s not just about the money. While it does play a big role in finding the right talent, what happens after they step into their position determines whether or not you keep them. Do they get periodic breaks to clear their head, are there beverages available to stay hydrated, do you have profit sharing, flexible shifts? Retention goes well beyond the paycheck.
Many movies and television shows build story lines around the water cooler and its place for catching up on the ongoing of the office between employees. While this may not be entirely true, many employees do enjoy getting up and connecting with other members of their team. A water cooler in an office represents much more than a gossip session. For many, it’s a way to get up, stretch the legs and take a break from their thoughts. Your company can gain much from this practice. First, circulation, as a good stretch does wonders for the body. Secondly, it gives your employee a chance to collect his thoughts. And, thirdly, it helps to reduce stress, making your employee healthier. In addition, having access to water in the workplace keeps your employees focused, reduces fatigue and increases energy. All this from a simple trip to the office water dispenser located down the hallway.
Most of your employees have a full life that exists outside the office. Being sensitive to this is almost as important to an employee as their salary. Many companies are now doing away with the traditional 9 to 5 schedule and working with their employees to find a shift that suits their needs. While you may think that changing hours isn’t going to prevent absenteeism, you might be pleasantly surprised. When an employee has a flexible schedule, they can attend doctor’s appointments, pick children up from daycare, attend school trips and teacher-parent conferences. By having the flexibility to work their full 40-hour work week on their schedule, they can maintain a healthy lifestyle outside of work and focus on the task at hand when they are on your time clock.
Pension, profit sharing and time off
Perks of the job that reward employees for their service are an invaluable tool for retaining excellent workers. In the early 2000s many companies canceled their profit sharing and pensions plans, or at the very least put them on hold. This caused many workers, even those on the job for many years, to start searching the help wanted ads. Doing away with benefits to save money is not the way to go. In essence what you are doing is taking away one of the biggest motivations for staying. Instead, if you what to improve your bottom line, attend a seminar and hold regular monthly meetings to discuss what’s working and the areas that need improving. Then address the employees head on and ask for their thoughts (a big winner). Time off is also important. People need to step away from a stressful environment a few times a year for a week or so to meditate and simply unwind.
Job recognition and job sharing
Employees who are on the job many years are good at what they do, but also bored. Successful companies are finding out that if you move employees around and have them do various jobs they connect to the entire process of the company. When they understand what needs to get done, it gets done. Employees want to feel a part of the process. The moving and job sharing also keeps fresh ideas bouncing around the office, another big win for your company. While there is training involved, in the end, you’ll have the luxury of having most everyone in your office capable of performing any job.