How to Keep the Keepers

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According to Fortune magazine, for many of the world’s most admired companies, the ability to attract and retain talent has been the single-most reliable predictor of excellence. And it may be the single-most important challenge of this decade not in just our business but any business.

Every organisation needs to have a strategy in place to retain the high performers that give it a competitive edge; the ones you cannot afford to lose.

A moderate level of turnover of team can be good for a business; it means fresh ideas and approaches. Moreover, as stated in Darwin’s Theory, it is all about survival of the fittest. Considering this, every organisation needs to have a strategy in place to retain the high performers, whom you cannot afford to lose.

The kind of business we all are in, ignoring high levels of team turnover can be very costly. It also lowers internal morale and could harm an organisation’s external reputation. So, understanding the importance of team retention is vital. And I feel that before this, it is essential to try to learn more about the reasons why people leave our business.

The reasons might simply be more attractive jobs elsewhere or chances for lifestyle reshapes, in which case it might be out of your hands to retain them. However, many people leave the business because they are dissatisfied with their current situation.

With our experience so far, the most common negative reasons for leaving the business includes;

  • Poor earnings
  • Lack of training and development opportunities
  • Dissatisfaction with management
  • Not getting along with other team members
  • Lack of work/life balance

There are ways of retaining such people wherein retention strategies come into picture. These retention strategies are important because they help create a positive work environment and strengthen your team member’s commitment towards the organization. Strategies that target team engagement, such as team-builders and community involvement, increase company morale and give your team a sense of pride in what they do.

There are some effective tactics that have proven beneficial in retaining people, as highlighted below;

Sharing Right Information

To begin with, we need to remember that a new Business Associate will have similar doubts, negatives and experiences as you had as a new person in the company. Hence, explaining the industry, pre-empting and addressing the negatives which they will face will help you to retain and build your team faster.

Importance of field – Management vs. Field

Your new team member has to be explained that going on the field on a daily basis will help them to develop certain skills such as effective communication, dealing with different types of people, their attitude, understanding the market and handling rejections. These are the set of the skills which will enhance their efficiency in team management later on in the company and help them to attain a higher position in the company faster.

Instant gratification (Want results now)

While learning to ride a bicycle, we fall. It does not mean that the bicycle is bad, the person helping you or you are bad. You have to get back on the bicycle and keep practicing till you succeed. At every level in the company, you will face a new set of problems. And only by practicing every day you will get better at it. It is also important not to compare yourself with others as every person has different learning ability. Everyone is good at something and not so good at other things.

How To Keep The Keepers

Negatives on the field

In our business, we are aware of the fact that there will never be a product which everyone will buy. It is not the product, but that’s how the market responds. This should be well explained to your new team member. For example, in a shopping mall, 3 Lakhs customers visit in a week. Number of people actually buying is only 10 to 15%. Same is the case on the field. You meet 60 people, but the conversion rate is 2 to 3. The only difference is that we go to the customer in our business. Value addition to the client is a free advertisement for 56 – 57 customers who said no. It also results in cost reduction compared to conventional medium.

Family Negatives

It is very important for your new team member not to oversell the business to his or her parents. As we do not follow a conventional business model, people fail to understand the growth pattern of Business Owner and financial freedom in 6-10 month time period. So telling parents that they will be a BUSINESS HEAD in a year and will be making 1 Lakh to 1.5 Lakhs a month is not something they will relate to. So it is necessary to explain them that they are a business associate and will be mentored for the higher position over a period of one year. Moreover, their promotion will be completely based on their performance.

Friends Negative

Shannon L. Alder correctly said that “Personality begins where comparison leaves off. Be unique. Be memorable. Be confident. Be proud.”

Hence, it is necessary to let your new team member know about how not to compare themselves with their friends. It is short-term hard work and long-term laziness, or short-term laziness and long-term hard work. We definitely get affected when we see our friends taking weekends off or coming home early. But it is important to understand that the hard work we are applying now will only show results over a period of time which will result in a higher position, financial freedom, international exposure and more time with friends and family in the future.

Hard work

In a unique business like ours, initially it takes time for people to adjust and adapt for field work, starting early, going late, new environment, etc. Hence, let your new team members know about this. It is important for them to understand that as they have just passed out from university it takes time for some people to adapt themselves to the working environment.

Getting along with right people

It is very important for your new team member to get along with the right people in the company. You are a product of your environment. Mostly new team members approach their colleagues when they face difficulties rather than approaching an experienced trainer doing well or their team leader. As they say that the chance of two blind men crossing the highway is very less, so it is better to ask for help from someone who is experienced.

Jobs on the Field

Your team members will get job offers on the field more frequently as people look for confident and smart individuals. Our mentoring will make them one. However, we need to make them understand that those offers might not have the same opportunity.

Value their contribution

Everyone likes appreciation. Moreover, it is a great tool to motivate your team. We need to show them that their contribution is valued at every stage. Hence, the certification module is an effective tool that can help us make them feel valued. Moreover, in case they choose to leave the business midway, they still will feel happy if they have some certifications as a proof of their abilities and skills that contributed to the success of our business. They will leave on a happy note which will help us keep our company’s reputation intact.

Lastly, make your team feel valued and proud of the work that they do, this will not only do wonders for your branding strategy, but will immediately improve your turnover rate. Develop a work culture that encourages diversity and creativity and put in place effective policies that promote flexible working, where possible.

Adopting a strategy for team retention is not always easy, but it will greatly benefit your organisation for sure.

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