Employee retention has become a top priority as an unprecedented number of workers look for a change. Retain your employees by becoming a better boss.

A company’s reputation as a great place to work is more important than ever, as the Bureau of Labor Statistics show a record 4.5 million workers quit their jobs in March 2022. In this tight labor market, it is essential to retain your employees using these five ways to become a better boss.

Listen

If you haven’t figured out that your employees know more about the day-to-day operation of your business than you do, you haven’t been listening. It’s not enough just to hold “listening sessions” and then carry on as if nothing said should spur action. Really take in employee concerns, insights, and suggestions, and do something tangible to show you heard them.

Know Everyone by Name

Taking an interest in staff members’ hobbies, the wellness of their families, and even their pets’ names, shows you care about them as human beings, not as numbers. The very least you can do is memorize everyone’s name and recognize their hard work with gratitude and praise.

Trust

Micromanagers send a message that they don’t trust their employees to do their jobs correctly. In fact, micromanagement is a sign of insecurity in a boss. Employees hate it, and they see right through it. Set achievable goals, communicate those goals clearly, and let your staff shine as they accomplish them.

Never Lose Your Temper

Throwing a temper tantrum makes you look like a toddler. Learn to communicate about performance concerns, urgent projects, or major foul-ups calmly. Offer solutions, set measurable goals, and above all, never treat your employees like punching bags for failures.

When something goes wrong, as the boss, that’s on you. It’s a sign that someone didn’t have the right information or support to get the job done. Accept responsibility and make sure your team knows that you will do what it takes to make the situation right by giving them what they need to turn things around.

Look at Things From the Employee Perspective

The corollary to listening to your employees is seeing things from their perspective. If your first reaction to an employee’s suggestion or concern is dismissal, as if the idea is trivial, you’ve just lost an employee and possibly some of their teammates.

Recognize things like the strains of being a single parent and the need for schedule flexibility. If staffers perceive your workplace as hostile to people based on protected categories like sex, race, age, disability, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, and gender identity, you could face a discrimination complaint. Take steps to learn how employees may view behaviors you see as harmless fun as sexual harassment from their perspective and in the eyes of the court.

Retaining your employees by becoming a better boss will show up in your bottom line. The staffers who produce those numbers will exceed their goals when they know they are appreciated as individuals with unique strengths and challenges and feel that you have their backs.


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