How to increase and maintain retention is a priority for every organisation that wants to keep growing.
What are the factors that affect best-fit between employees and the companies they work for? How can you make sure that your selection and development strategies continue working in your favour?
The answer here is about goal-alignment.
As long as an employee’s personal and professional goals are being met, they will continue to contribute to your organisational ones. This is why financial incentives alone are not enough to enhance the loyalty and performance of your staff.
We are all striving for that work-life balance, and it goes beyond the cliché of having the house, the car and the happy family. The desire to creatively contribute is basic, and neither more or less important than our physical and social needs. The famous hierarchy of needs is not really a hierarchy at all. The meaningfulness of our actions is just as important for fulfilment as our the return from those actions.
The difficulty arises because now you’re dealing with intangibles that are difficult to measure. Satisfaction, meaningfulness and fulfilment are hard to define, except in their absence.
This is where using goal-alignment can serve as a baseline. It’s simple to discern whether your goals are being met, assuming you have them clearly stated.
To be measurable, your employees’ personal and professional goals must be as well defined as your organisational ones.
When your employees start each day knowing that their actions on behalf of the organisation will take them closer to their own goals, they will naturally be filled with a greater sense of purpose.
The default state is to forget about oneself between 9-5, and to make the most of your paycheque when it comes. This kind of mindset has a great opportunity cost for your business. For your company to fulfil its own goals you must fulfil the goals of your clients. Now you’re able to take that a step further to include all your stakeholders, particularly your employees.
This is what is means to be a socially responsible, learning organisation, and the ramifications apply across selection, training and development:
– Choose your staff according to their own personal as well as their professional goals;
– Train them towards their unique strengths;
– Be as strategic in developing each individual, as you are with the organisation as a whole.
We are seeing a move away from the traditional, fixed staffing roles, and towards more modular and transient descriptions. This necessarily requires a change in methods of selection. While basic competencies will always be relevant, selection according to attitudes, aptitudes, values and even virtues, will result in placements that have greater long-term potential.
The organisation that focuses on creating reciprocal goal-alignment with employees will increase not just long-term staff retention and performance, but also will massively enhance their employer reputation. The message for knowledge-based enterprises is clear… Serve those who serve you and reap endless benefits.