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Leaving So Soon? How to improve employee retention

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018

Do you know if your employees are satisfied with their jobs? It’s a scary question if you think about it. Even though most salon owners will admit that they don’t expect their 18-year-old bed cleaner to work part-time forever, few are willing to engage in open communication about what their employees really want.

What makes your happiest employees stay? What makes others want to leave? What are their ultimate career goals, and how can you help their work experience be valuable? The answer to these questions can help you reduce turnover and avoid the costs of rehiring and retraining.

According to the American Psychology Association’s “Workforce Retention Survey,” only 59 percent of employees stay at their jobs because of the compensation. Instead of fostering an environment where your staff is revolving door of temporary talent, dig deeper to find out how you can create a truly beneficial place of work.

Provide small perks that are unrelated to sales. Something as simple as bringing in a sweet treat each week can make employees feel appreciated for what they do even if they aren’t your number one salesperson. Learn your staff’s favorite treats or take them out as a team.

During initial interviews, encourage prospects to be honest about their long-term career goals. By finding ways to incorporate skills that will help them along their chosen path, employees will find more value in their job and are likely to stay longer. Sometimes, this can even help you delegate work to employees who are interested in marketing, hospitality, business or related fields.

Practice respect. Many part-time employees are balancing multiple jobs, school or other obligations. It may seem like a no-brainer, but having checks ready on time, giving ample notice for work schedules and leaving room to be flexible can make a big difference on how employees act when it’s their turn behind the counter.

Many companies use exit interviews to get more candid opinions about how they could improve the business. If you don’t already use this as a tool for evaluation, you should. But you don’t have to wait until an employee is leaving! If you craft a thoughtful survey for regular use during employment, you’ll likely fain new insight about how to increase retention.

Another major influence in employee retention is the impact of management. You and your managers should be role models and a positive influence on each person and customer. Workers who report negativity, lack of communication, hypocrisy or aggression in the workplace are less likely to stick around even if they like the work. Do your best to form good relationships with each staff member so they feel happier to see you. They will feel more comfortable coming to you should problems arise in the future.

Lastly, provide a clear set of expectations for each position. Like a syllabus for a class, expectations tell employees what they will learn how to do and how they will know they are doing it well. In general, people like to know what their boss wants from them. By making the job straightforward and methodical, you can give them the tools to be empowered and know where they stand instead of breeding the fear of the unknown.

With these tactics, you’ll see your team improve their attitude and sales while extending their employment with your company. It’s no accident: Retention requires attention! Give your employees the attention they deserve starting today.


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