Business Calcium Blog

Retain Your Top Talent: People Are Not Just HR’s Responsibility

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According to a Wall Street Journal jobs report, more people have resigned in recent months than were laid-off. The Journal reports this is a sign of growing confidence because, if people quit, obviously they believe they can land another job. In total 1.9 million people resigned, while 1.8 million were laid-off. Similar numbers were reported the month before, with the “quitters” beating out the “pink-slippers.”

If people are indeed more confident, it is great news for our economy. It means now is the time to tune into why people are leaving jobs and start to prevent turnover among your key executives and managers as the job market recovers.

Today I was re-reading The War for Talent, a Harvard Business School Press book based on the McKinsey & Company study that surveyed 13,000 executives at more than 120 companies. I came across this quote from Kevin Sharer, CEO of Amgen, the 180th largest company in the world.

“I told my leaders that if they believed that people are the responsibility of HR, they’ve totally missed the point.”

Tip #1

If people are resigning, it’s time to identify the top 20-30% of your team and spend your time with them. At a management seminar I attended the speaker said, “When you have someone who is meeting or exceeding your expectations you are setting, check the box and move on to the next person on your team.” I happen to think this is wrong.

This is a common mistake made by management. They spend 80% of their time with the bottom 20%. Coaching, counseling, documenting… Maybe the reason more people quit than were let go last month is because executives are afraid to fire those who are under-performing.

Tip #2

Devote yourself to your top performers, spend less time with the low achievers and stop neglecting your best. One of the main reasons people leave is due to a lack of appreciation. Are you wasting time with your worst people or investing time in your best?

Sooner or later every company on earth is going to start hiring at the same time. So what should you do?

- Identify your best and begin golden-handcuffing them now!
- Spend time with them. Listen to them. Create a great relationship with them. Be a boss they admire. Recognize and reward them.
- Plan their careers with them. Create wealth opportunities for them. Provide career advancing opportunities.
- Build their skills. Build trust and good relations. Work hard getting them promoted.

Overall, get your senior managers committed to you. Provide flexibility. Say to them today, “I appreciate you.”

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