Overview: Organizations find that motivating and retaining employees is more challenging than ever. Negotiating from a position of strength, employees want competitive pay, solid leadership, flexible work schedules, and inspirational company cultures. The demand for coaching-oriented servant leadership has never been greater.
With the Great Resignation upon us, employers all over the country are struggling to attract talent and retain employees powering their business efforts. Motivation has always been key to employee retention. How do you motivate employees? What do employees find engaging and inspiring? What can you give them to make them stay?
Due to current economic and social circumstances, employees have more negotiating power than ever.
Employees of the post-industrial age demand solid leadership, better remuneration, predictable yet flexible work schedules, short commutes, and healthy organizational cultures. There is one factor that seems to trump everything else, however, when it comes to motivating and retaining employees.
1. The Value of Servant Leadership
Leadership coaching professionals have long extolled servant leadership as the centerpiece of the intelligent leadership paradigm. Good leadership is something job seekers appreciate more than good pay.
Effective and motivating leadership gives employees confidence and certainty. It encourages a professional and positive work environment. Servant leaders understand a culture focused on leadership coaching within the organization empowers employees, giving them room and opportunities for growth.
Solid company leadership sets clear goals and expectations and provides all the resources workers need to give things their all.
Intelligent leaders excel in communication and many other aspects of leadership. To be a leader for whom people want to work for, here are a few skills you’ll need:
- Providing consistent positive examples
- Receiving and giving relevant feedback
- Being a master collaborator
- Being good at long-term strategic planning
- Engaging employees and building meaningful relationships
- Understanding when and what to delegate
- Formulating a clear organizational purpose and clarifying how everyday activity relates to it
2. Praise and Encouragement
Praise and encouragement are basic human needs transcending age-related and other constraints. When we receive meaningful praise, we tend to redouble our efforts to ensure we’re worthy. Praise is like warm ointment for the soul, but only meaningful praise elicits desirable effects.
Leaders who go overboard with praise inflate its supply and erode its value. Infrequent praise misleads employees and confuses them about what leaders consider right and wrong.
3. Competitive Income
Executive coaching focuses on how leaders can grow into better versions of themselves and doesn’t concern itself with employee remuneration. Yet, in the words of Madonna, we live in a material world, and material incentives have firm places in the grand scheme of employee motivation.
Leaders should ask themselves whether they provide the right compensation to employees. They can use data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics as a rough guide to this end.
4. Flexible Work Schedule
Employees and leaders alike know that the days of bosses treating workers as slaves are over. People are busy; they have lives outside work, and the COVID-19 pandemic has called even more attention to the need for flexible hours.
Organizations observing flexible work hours allow employees to arrive early and leave early or arrive late and leave late, depending on their schedules. Some also allow four longer workdays instead of five shorter ones, job-sharing, and remote work options.
5. Relatable Organizational Values and Culture
To give their best, people need psychological safety. They need to feel valued, included, and respected. The best company cultures are focused on coaching. With everyone acting as a coach for everyone else, such organizational cultures support individual careers and offer advancement opportunities to everyone.
People also need company values to align with theirs. It’s easy to motivate and engage employees whose values are aligned with organizational purposes.
Health insurance benefits, short and affordable commutes, and friendly, relatable co-workers are also high on employees’ preference lists. People like safety, reliability, predictability, flexibility, and opportunities. So long as your organization can deliver these basics coupled with solid, intelligent leadership, you shouldn’t have problems retaining your employees or attracting new talent.