The stress and strain of our new normality is trying – even for the most mentally robust employee. Isolation, lockdowns and the loneliness that ensues are adding intensity to an already overloaded staff base. As such, it’s important that organizations lead with understanding – providing a much-needed support for workers who may be crumbling under the pressure.

If your employees don’t feel appreciated, then they may head for the door. A report from Businessolver found that 92% of employees would stay with a company if their managers showed a little more empathy – with engaged employees 59% less likely to leave their current role.

Another recent report revealed that between 20% and 50% of employees quit their jobs because of burnout – with 76% of ‘under-valued’ candidates actively seeking new opportunities.

Three things you do to retain staff

Recognise your assets
The first step in holding onto your people is preventative, not curative. Take the time to really showcase your appreciation for your people. This doesn’t mean that you have to up their salary or add on a bonus – just take them aside and recognise the hard work and effort they’re putting into their daily tasks. A little praise goes a long way.

Understand the motivations of those around you, or who report to you. Is it purely extrinsic? Do they care solely about title and salary band? Is it about the work they are doing, leadership opportunities, or something else entirely? When you understand motivations of those around you, you can help shape the work they do in a way that will be fulfilling to them. At a minimum, you can at least have a conversation about how to get there when you acknowledge the dissatisfaction in the first place.

Invest in their futures
Learning and development has been proven to increase retention rates, with 94% of employees claiming they’d stay with an organization if their managers invested in their future careers. By showcasing your commitment to their career goals, and setting out clear objectives, employees feel like they’re a valued part of the organization. And, as an added bonus, you’ll reap the rewards of their personal improvement. 

Take interest in the individual
There’s no such thing as the ‘average employee’ – we’re all unique blends of our past experiences and outside influences. By understanding an employee’s personal life, their responsibilities, their interests, their issues, leaders can better understand their workplace performance. Take the initiative to instigate authentic conversations around work-life blend. If an employee is struggling with problems in their personal life, it can manifest as a negative attitude towards work. Speak to your staff – you may be surprised how receptive they are to the support.