What Binoculars and Microscopes CAN’T Show You About Your Employees

May 2, 2016 in HR Best Practices



Both of these instruments provide unique visual perspectives, but neither will help you identify what’s right in front of you: great employees who are at high risk of leaving when you don’t focus on retention efforts.

And the number of those high-risk employees may be higher than you think. According to the results of this 2014 Towers Watson Global Workforce Study, fewer than half (45%) of all employees are “stayers” (i.e., unlikely to leave in the next two years).

Can you afford to lose more than half your staff in the next 48 months?

Employee retention is back in the spotlight. Today, Kinsa continues our series of posts designed to help you keep your top performers. In this installment, we share ways to prevent turnover by identifying employees who are at the highest risk of leaving.

Focus your lens.

Not all turnover is bad. A certain amount is healthy for your organization – especially when you lose poor performers. But unfortunately, subpar employees are not the most likely to jump ship. In fact, the same Towers Watson study showed that over one-third (34%) of high-retention-risk employees exceed (or far exceed) managers’ performance expectation.

So manage your retention efforts wisely. Instead of spending the majority of your time coddling the bottom 10% of your staff, actively churn your talent pool. Focus your retention and development efforts on your top performers and positions that are toughest to backfill, while simultaneously releasing the “dead weight.” Over time, this approach can decrease voluntary turnover of your superstars, minimize future talent gaps and dramatically boost your food & beverage organization’s performance.

What are the best ways to focus your lens and pinpoint the best targets for your retention efforts (i.e., exceptional professionals who may already have one foot out the door)?

Know the profile of high-retention risk employees.

The Global Workforce Study showed that, overall, individuals who are at the highest risk:

  • Feel blocked in their careers. Lack of career advancement opportunities is the second most frequently cited reason for leaving an organization.
  • Are worried about finances. Lack of adequate pay increases creates significant work stress. In addition to driving employees out the door, this worry also dramatically reduces their productivity while they remain.
  • Are less engaged. More than one in three (36%) of high-retention-risk employees are disengaged. However, 28% are actually highly engaged, making them even tougher to identify.
  • Embrace change. Most high-risk individuals say they enjoy new experiences, embrace change and gladly take risks to improve their enjoyment of life.

Retention Effort – Know the top reasons your best employees are leaving.

Successful retention efforts and a strategy start with a deep understanding of your high performers’ attitudes and needs. Keep your best and brightest working for you by removing the biggest threats to their continued employment:

  • Issues with management. Talented professionals aren’t afraid to walk away from bosses who are impossible to please, fail to praise or make them feel uncomfortable.
  • Toxic co-workers or company culture. Office drama, cliques and a lack of belonging make it easier for high performers to leave. In contrast, supportive culture of engagement has been proven to improve retention for exceptional talent.
  • Unclear career paths. Your best employees want – and deserve – a clear picture of how their long-term professional goals can be achieved within your food & beverage organization. If they have nothing to strive for or will never be considered for promotion, they will readily seek another employer that operates based on merit. Whether you conduct performance reviews annually or more frequently, be sure to discuss your organization’s future with top performers – and outline their role within it.
  • Insufficient opportunities for professional development. Defining clear career paths is a good start, but if those plans aren’t supported by growth and development opportunities, they’re just lip service. Make talented food & beverage professionals’ career goals a reality with training, certification, education, leadership development and mentoring opportunities.
  • Lack of recognition. Make sure you have a formal, consistent plan to acknowledge and reward exceptional performance.
  • Lack of work/life satisfaction. Exhausting work hours and the inability to truly disconnect take a toll on even the most dedicated professionals. Offer flexible work schedules, provide remote work opportunities (if feasible) and encourage your employees to take their earned vacation time.

Need high performers who will stay with your food & beverage organization?

Kinsa Group takes a focused approach to delivering exceptional professionals who will thrive long-term.  Our recruiting process ensures the candidates we refer:

  • have the skills and experience to succeed;
  • possess the “soft skills” and personality to mesh with your culture;
  • bring the energy and the best practices to help your company achieve its objectives.

Contact a Kinsa recruiter today to discuss your hiring needs.