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The 7 Habits of High-Retention Leaders

Updated: Jan 11, 2023

Employee retention continues to be a concern for many organizations as high turnover, across all industries, continues to disrupt the workplace. Unwanted turnover can be a costly problem, having negative effects on a wide range of people and business results.

Here are a few of the reasons:

  • The monetary cost of turnover is 1/2 to 3 times an employee's annual salary

  • Losing your best people means losing your most reliable, innovative, and productive employees

  • Turnover can also break down morale and result in lost customer relationships

What can an organization do to mitigate this concern? We believe that managers are the key. According to Gallup, managers influence 70% of an employee’s motivation and most sources say they are the #1 reason that employees leave.

What’s the answer? Develop your managers to practice the 7 Habits of High-Retention Managers as indicated below:

1. Ignite purpose

We all want to feel like we are making a difference. A clear company mission unites team members around a shared cause and helps foster a larger emotional investment in their work. Managers can help communicate and inspire employees by helping to bring the mission to life – and by helping them understand how they contribute to the greater purpose of the organization.

2. Build trust

Trust is the foundation of retention and engagement. If you don’t have it, employees aren’t likely to stay and, if lack of trust is an issue across your organization, you aren’t likely to have any kind of sustainable success.

Managers can build trust with their team by showing respect; being a person of integrity; demonstrating humility; being vulnerable; and extending trust to employees by giving them the autonomy to do their jobs.

3. Manage yourself

You must be able to manage yourself to manage others effectively. And this starts with being self-aware. Once you are aware of your strengths, weaknesses, and potential sources of bias, you are in a better position to keep your cool and choose a better response when stressful situations occur.

4. Be a good coach

Google’s Project Oxygen found that the best managers were good coaches. They used a broad definition of coaching to include feedback, listening, guiding people toward solutions, and fostering growth. Recent research indicates that people in today’s workforce don’t want managers, they want coaches. This is particularly true amongst the younger generations that now make up 50% of the workforce.

5. Practice accountability.

Where there is a lack of accountability, there is a lack of performance, and it will have an impact on engagement and retention. High performers don’t like it and will likely be the first to jump ship. High-retention managers hold themselves and others accountable for results using the 5 Cs of Accountability:

  1. Clarity of expectations

  2. Courage to have difficult interactions

  3. Collaboration in goal-setting and problem-solving

  4. Consistency in holding employees to expectations – and in being fair and consistent

  5. Correction including counseling, discipline or termination when warranted

6. Communicate well

The Center for Creative Leadership encourages managers to communicate relentlessly. This involves clear, concise, open, and honest communication using different mediums – and typically involves overcommunicating because people need to hear things a lot before it sticks! Most importantly, this includes listening actively.

7. Show you care

Show employees that you care about their wellbeing (career, physical, mental, social, and financial). Helpful strategies to cultivate include caring interactions; showing empathy; providing flexibility; and showing appreciation.

So, how can you do this? Great news – InfluencHeR Consulting has a new series of workshops called the 7 Habits of High-Retention Managers to grow your managers in these 7 important areas.

We have a virual series kicking off on March 2nd and can also schedule a virtual or in-person series just for your organization. The series will consist of 5 workshops covering the 7 habits including a follow-up group coaching session.

Concerned about budget? If participation could save just one employee, you would have your return on investment!

Email for more information.

Learn more and sign up for upcoming virtual opportunity at an affordable Early Bird Rate here.


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