Does your business allow people to be themselves?

| January 28, 2015

Creating a comfortable workplace environment is essential to staff retention. Chris Goulas shares his insights in regard to ensuring your employees are satisfied.

The other day my wife asked me my opinion on whether her new year’s resolution from a business perspective should be to tell people what she really thinks or to just ‘toe the line’?

Surprisingly, the answer didn’t take long to register with me and so I responded ‘just be yourself’.

Her question got me thinking.  Should it be up to the individual to fit in to avoid feeling left out or is it up to the business to create an environment that allows each person to be themselves? Is the latter possible? Which business are you?

There have been many books written about what separates great businesses from the rest.  I guess it depends on how you define ‘great’.  If I could limit it to two themes it would be a) respect and b) satisfaction.  So how do you gauge a level of respect and satisfaction from the staff within your business?

The new school approach would see your business prescribe an anonymous, independently organised employee engagement survey.  The old school approach would see your business take the team on a night out and after a fair amount of ‘truth serum’ you’ll receive first-hand direct and honest feedback.  Like most things, the right approach for your business is probably somewhere in the middle.

So in thinking about your new year’s resolution for your business in 2015, how will you approach or re-evaluate common themes such as identity, purpose, value, differentiation, investment, staff engagement and retention.

If we took a quick look at staff retention, it’s safe to say that most great businesses would have in place a workforce strategy and forecast that parallels the overarching longer-term business objectives.  Most elite sporting organisations employ list managers to make sure they have the right balance of experience and skills in order to execute upon a game plan.

Should your business be any different in consideration of where your resources and money are allocated when planning to improve your ‘list’ and therefore business outcomes?

In my experience, I’ve found that there is irony in the fact that it is small to medium sized businesses who typically have fewer resources, time and capital with which to allocate to retention strategies however they are the businesses who need to invest the most in this area.

Retention strategies can come in the form of training, learning and development, personal and professional development, recruitment and redundancy, all of which have a role to play, and depending on your business plan and lifecycle should be reviewed regularly.

You’ve probably heard the saying many times, “if it was that easy, everyone would be doing it” however it is also true to say “don’t be afraid to give up the good for the great”.  The choice is ours to make.  Choose to have a great 2015.

Chris Goulas is the owner and founder of the Recruitment well which has been setup to help businesses with a simple, affordable, no risk approach to sourcing quality staff.  I possess over thirteen years’ experience within the financial services industry with a focus on recruitment, operations management and member services.  This experience has highlighted to me the pressure businesses face in terms of cost, time and effort when hiring staff.  From this, the Recruitment well was created.