Updated: May 31
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How to improve low staff morale and retain employees amid the Great Resignation & COVID-19
It's time for employers to listen to their workers.
They can no longer afford not to, according to Jason Greer or Greer Consulting, Inc. According to him, the massive exodus we've seen in the last few years could be just the start as more workers are emboldened to invest in themselves and leave unsupportive workplaces.
In fact, almost 70 million Americans quit or lost their job last year alone.
"People are tired of feeling unappreciated, spread too thin and ultimately coming in every day to make someone else rich," said Greer. "For decades workers have been treated as if they are lucky to have a job. The truth is that, often, workers are a business’s greatest asset and should be appreciated as such. Employers have a number of resources at their disposal to retain and inspire workers, helping the business become the best version of itself."
Greer has spoken to thousands of employees across several industries over the past 17 years as the “Employee Whisperer.” He said he was able to identify the three first steps every employer must take to rebuild trust and improve retention and morale:
"So many people fail to realize the amazing super power that is listening and there are multiple ways to improve your ability to listen to employees. You can gain a lot of information through passive conversation in the hallways. You can also take advantage of more formal resources: go through exit interviews and see what can be changed to keep people; note trending language in applications of your employees, and engage in more formal discussions with other supervisors. When you take a second to listen, you’ll realize there is more information around you than you realize. And this is all before you create new systems and resources like surveys or feedback channels, so I find it a lot easier to start where you are. Taking the time to listen to your employees issues and concerns AND following up to make sure these issues and concerns are properly addressed will do wonders for the relationship between managers and employees."
Make change now & relay those changes publicly:
"Start where you can and make immediate change. This helps you rapidly build trust and shows your commitment to your employees. If an employee is brave and honest enough to bring an issue up to you, then it is safe to say that it truly matters to them. Show you care by verbally acknowledging what you have heard, address it immediately and follow up consistently. It’s also critical to spread awareness about any changes you make. It’s not bragging. You are ensuring the new element is utilized and capitalized on so the impact is obvious to other leaders and more likely to be preserved."
Give everything proper time:
"You didn’t get here overnight so understand that this process can’t be rushed. Building trust, making change and improving employee satisfaction takes consistent and dedicated efforts. Don’t rush into making changes because you may end up proposing solutions that don’t fully and accurately meet their needs. When this happens, employees don’t support the new initiative and it can die out, ultimately a waste of your energy. Be sure to listen, get feedback on proposed solutions and really think through issues from all sides before implementing."
Employers must connect with workers to take their businesses and profit levels to new heights or risk losing their workers altogether, Greer added. Luckily, most are waiting to give their input.
You can learn more about working with the Employer Whisperer and employee trends at hiregci.com.
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