Think about a time when you were loyal to a company or an organization. Why did you stay there? What really motivated you to be there every time you worked? I realize each person’s story may be very different, considering our generational and cultural differences between all of us.
In my industry, people usually move around quite often. In fact, the hospitality industry is known for having a big turnover ratio from hourly employees to hotel managers. It’s not to say that hospitality companies are not investing in their people and want to create a thriving working environment for everyone. Companies such as Marriott and Southwest Airlines have been leading examples being the top companies to work for over a decade.
We had two recessions since 2000, with the second one recently impacting many industries and talent all across the world. These recessions created a new-normal not only managers and leaders in organizations, but the people who were out of a job and needed to possibly change careers for the first time.
Beverly Kaye and Sharon Jordan-Evans with Career Systems International conducted a research collecting data from more than 18,000 employees from various industries at all levels of companies big and small. The questions that were posed in the research were: “What kept you in a company that you stayed for a while?” and “What mattered most?”
According to Beverly Kaye and Jordan Evans, employees can leave the organization in two ways. Some people leave physically-they just walk over to the competition. Other people leave psychologically-mentally checking out but physically staying put.
We know that disengagement is costing the American economy almost $300 billion per year in lost productivity. The most recent Gallup poll reports that only 26% of American workers are engaged. (Loyal and productive).
Beverly Kaye and Sharon Jordan-Evans with Career Systems international did discover through their years of research that some common threads are consistent across almost every demographic groups and industry regardless of economic changes.
People still want:
- Exciting, challenging, meaningful work
- Supportive management/good boss
- Be recognized/valued/respected
- Career growth, learning and development
- A flexible work environment
- Fair Pay
Implications for leaders:
Leaders have to be proactive in reacting to these findings. These findings are a direct reflection of how we can engage better with the people we lead. We know not everyone has the same wants and needs but some are universal such the need to be recognized, valued and respected.
Have a Talent Conversation– Take the time today to engage by having a Talent Conversation. It could be in an interview format that can create a dialogue between you and the employee. Each employee is different and may have specific items on their list that they would like to see.
Have a check point with the employee-Find out where they are. Take the time to listen on what’s working and what’s not working? This could be an opportunity to get a sense of how our leadership is making an impact on their engagement level.
Provide opportunities and resources for their areas of talent-Often times, we assume that people will learn and sit through webinars to sharpen their skills in the area they like to grow and develop. I remember that I approached my employer about exploring an opportunity to become a better trainer. Attending several of the ASTD (American Society for Training and Development). It’s an area of strength and most of my upper management embraced that idea.
My HR manager was ecstatic about the opportunity to help me develop and grow. I think leaders and managers need to help their employees to at least suggest some of these resources as the employee may want to expand their skill set even further.
What are some of your suggestions on how leaders can create loyalty within their organization?