35 Chapters
Medium 9781626563476

Chapter Nine: How’s That Working for You?

Kaye, Beverly; Jordan-Evans, Sharon Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

How’s that working for you? We’ve asked hundreds of managers that question over the past sixteen years. Many respond, “I’ve learned a lot … and used what I learned.”

Here are three success stories. Read each one, then answer this question: What did the boss do well in this stay interview? At the end of the chapter, check out our opinion about what these managers did well.

MANAGER: Thanks for meeting with me today. I know that times are tense right now. Ever since the layoff announcement, I’ve been concerned about you. I hope you know that I want you to stay.

YOUNG ENGINEER: Well, to be honest, I’ve updated my résumé and have gone on a couple of interviews. I think I’ll have a job offer by the end of the week. I know the younger engineers are the first ones to go during a reduction in force. I’m one of those people.

MANAGER: You have a great future here, and I’ll do everything I can to protect you during these downsizings. I need you here!

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Medium 9781626563476

Chapter One: Why Bother?

Kaye, Beverly; Jordan-Evans, Sharon Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Why bother? What’s in it for you?

You’re busy, perhaps busier than you’ve ever been in your life. Why would you consider adding one more item to your overwhelming to-do list? Why take the time and make the effort to conduct stay interviews?

The answer is that you should conduct stay interviews because you want to:

better understand all of your employees. What makes them unique and special? What do they bring to the team? And what do they want more of … or less of?

demonstrate that you value them as human beings, that you care. This assumes, of course, you actually do care.

encourage them to stay on your team. It’s very expensive to lose them. You want them to stay, both physically and psychologically. You want them to love coming to work with you and for you. You want them to bring their creativity, energy, and effort with them.

You’ve already seen the numbers. You know, the ones that tell you how much it costs when a talented employee walks out your door. It’s been well documented that it costs 70 percent to 400 percent of an employee’s annual salary to replace him or her. Some of those costs are easy to measure and are sometimes called “hard costs.” Think about one talented person you lost recently. What did it cost your organization to replace her? Did you:

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Medium 9781609948849

6 Family Get Friendly

Kaye, Beverly; Jordan-Evans, Sharon Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Ponder this: Do your employees have to choose between work and family?

People disengage or quit when rigid workplace rules cause unbearable family stress. Would they leave your organization over work/family conflicts? Yes. Business magazines have spent plenty of ink in recent years on the importance of developing a “family-friendly culture.” But what does it really mean?

Employees are asking for a workplace that helps them balance the demands of their work and family lives, rather than forcing them to choose one over the other. Today and from now on, organizations that are not family-friendly will definitely have a harder time finding and keeping good people.

Talented employees do not have to look far to find family-friendly employers who offer features like these:

• Childcare facilities or subsidies

• Flexible work schedules

• Job sharing

• Telecommuting

• Eldercare assistance (such as referral programs)

• Extended and creative maternity or paternity leave programs

Savvy employers give talented employees flexibility in how they work, when they work, and often where they work. They allow employees to meet personal responsibilities while still being productive at work.

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14 Numbers Run Them

Kaye, Beverly; Jordan-Evans, Sharon Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Ponder this: How much does it cost to lose them?

Imagine that you arrive at work one morning to the evidence of a burglary. A brand-new desktop computer has disappeared from an employee’s desk. You call the building security office and the police. Then you launch your own investigation. You are determined to find out how this happened and who is responsible. You will not rest until the case is solved. And you immediately increase security measures—no more property will be lost.

Now think about the last time one of your most talented employees was stolen by the competition or just walked out your door. What kind of investigation did you launch? What measures did you implement to prevent it from happening again? Maybe the loss of this precious asset set off no alarm bells because no one ever really assessed the cost of losing talent. It doesn’t take long to run the numbers. And you may be surprised.

Numbers and financial statements are the universal language of business. Front-line workers and senior managers alike understand them. We’ll be speaking of U.S. dollars here, but many of our clients are counting in euros, pesos, pounds, rupees, or one of another 180-plus global currencies.

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13 Mentor be One

Kaye, Beverly; Jordan-Evans, Sharon Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Ponder this: What are they learning from you?

People with mentors are twice as likely to stay. And they won’t just stay longer, they’ll produce more.

Senior executives and human resource professionals know this. That’s why mentoring programs around the globe have doubled in numbers in recent years. Companies that want to retain high-performing women and minorities are investing in mentoring programs; some believe good mentoring will break the glass ceiling. Mentoring has become a way not only to transfer crucial skills and knowledge but to inspire loyalty in new employees, emerging leaders, and older workers who might otherwise leave sooner.

Given the hierarchical structure of many Asian cultures, there are already semblances of mentoring in place. The seniors are expected to teach the juniors the ropes while the juniors are expected to obey and learn well so that they can, in turn, teach the next set of juniors.

—Wendy Tan, co-founder Flame Center

Companies are giving creative incentives to mentors, pairing mentors with new hires, and offering group mentoring and online mentoring to hasten the development of management and technical skills. They’re even linking diverse cultures by pairing mentors with their mentees across the globe.

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