Is Your Team Thinking ‘New Year, New Job?’ 7 Ways to Retain Your Team in 2020

The new year is a time of re-evaluation, and no one knows this better than recruiters, with LinkedIn inboxes all over the world filling up with offers of new opportunities and higher salaries. This is great if you’re planning a move yourself – but not so good if you’re looking to retain talent in 2020!

So, how do you stop your team from moving on when an attractive new prospect comes knocking?

Of course, this is partially a trick question. You can’t, and shouldn’t, feel pressured to promote or raise salaries based on threats to leave alone, and some offers may come with benefits you’re unable to match. However, to stop your staff actively looking for something new, you can make them as fulfilled as possible in their current roles, delaying turnover or at least leaving them with great memories of your company.

Here are 7 great ways to give you the best chance of retaining your team into 2020 and beyond!

1. Work with their personalities

With the proliferation of profiling tools on the market, such as Myers-Briggs and DiSC, it’s easier than ever to work out what really motivates your staff. Deal with someone with high D, for example, and you need to be constantly challenging them, giving more responsibility and giving direct feedback, but try the same approach with an employee scoring high for S and you might find them running for the door. Give everyone half an hour to fill out these mbti personalities tests and use the online guides to find out how best to relate to them, give feedback, and assign work which makes the most of individual skillsets and leaves your team feeling fulfilled and happy in their work.

2. Innovative benefits

A fatter pay packet isn’t the only thing that many employees aim for – indeed, recent research discovered it’s the highest-paid workers who are most likely to have plans to take a side hustle full time soon. Instead, think about what motivates employees outside of the ‘hard’ job metrics: is it flexible working, increased options to work from home, wellness at work or even just a free breakfast? Team up with HR to run a survey and gauge what’s most important to your employees, and how you can implement changes that mean something to them.

3. Team building exercises

Icebreakers and corporate mixers can feel out of step with the modern workforce but have no socials at all and you may end up with a disconnected team who don’t bond and build an identity. Up the ante with an escape room challenge or introduce board games on a Friday afternoon. In fact, a study has found that over 50% of people play board games to connect with friends. So, not only will a casual game of Pictionary improve cognitive ability, stress levels and morale, but it’s also the perfect chance for colleagues to get to know each other on a personal level.  

4. Training and development

Not only do you want your staff to improve their skills, but an underdeveloped workforce is also an unhappy one. In fact, lack of training or support is often a major reason why employees look elsewhere for new challenges. There are many ways you can train and develop your staff, from one-to-one sessions, mentorship or the likes of e-learning sites, workshops and training courses.

5. Transparency

Whether you think that keeping certain information from your staff is prudent, or that you should oversee formulating your company culture, an atmosphere in which your staff are unaware why you’re making key decisions often becomes mistrustful and nervous. Instead, create a company culture that works with clear understanding, from job roles to responsibilities and performance. It pays to remember that protecting your employees from the realities of the business tends to do more harm than good.

6. Recognise accomplishment

Truly appreciating your employees goes beyond dishing out bonuses. Thank you emails, team awards or small rewards for going the extra mile makes employees feel secure and seen within the workforce. By kicking this off while team members are still happy in their roles, you’ll build a mutual appreciation and company pride that lasts, and can even weather harder times within your industry.

7. Conduct exit interviews

If all else fails, exit interviews can help you pinpoint where you may have gone wrong, and if there is anything you could have done to retain talent on its way out. Underlying issues, from poor management to workplace bullying, can also show up during these conversations, and you can use this information to make positive changes before the trickle of leavers becomes a waterfall. You can also use it to find good points to your company or receive good feedback about managers you can then show your appreciation to, allowing you to keep doing more of the things you’re good at.

Charlotte Giver

Charlotte is the founder and editor-in-chief at Your Coffee Break magazine. She studied English Literature at Fairfield University in Connecticut whilst taking evening classes in journalism at MediaBistro in NYC. She then pursued a BA degree in Public Relations at Bournemouth University in the UK. With a background working in the PR industry in Los Angeles, Barcelona and London, Charlotte then moved on to launching Your Coffee Break from the YCB HQ in London’s Covent Garden and has been running the online magazine for the past 10 years. She is a mother, an avid reader, runner and puts a bit too much effort into her morning brew.