Published: June 25, 2024 | Updated: June 24, 2024

Greater Sandpoint Chamber: Solving the problem of turnover

Mickey Quinn

Mickey Quinn

Turnover has always been a challenge in the service industry, but lately it has become a major issue in all types of industries. The strategies and methods that were successful in the past are no longer the right ones to use today. Today's environment requires something different, a new strategy and a new method. Here are some key tips on how you can build an environment where employees want to stay.

Be likeable. Hated leaders will eventually be overthrown or fired, or their entire team will quit on them. The only way to get people to like you is to be a genuinely good person. When you show you care about your people, they are more likely to like you and believe in you.  

Make sure your people and their jobs are a good fit. If you try to put an introvert in a role where they need to be bubbly and personable with customers, they will most likely fail. You need to match your employees’ natural strengths with the role they need to fill in the workplace. Once you have them in the right role and it's a good fit, then you can work on training them to develop their skills in other areas. 

Allow your people to create their own goals, and then modify them together. When you allow your people to set goals for themselves, they will have much better buy-in into achieving the results. Start the goal-setting process by sharing your company/department goals, and have your employees determine what they can do to help achieve them. Then review the goals they created together, and modify together, if needed. 

Give your people specific tasks and clear direction. Make sure they know what is expected of them and especially how to do it. Be sure to let them know that what they do is a vital part of your organization. This will help them feel valued, appreciated and respected.

Provide a pleasant and happy atmosphere. You need to make it fun. Yes, work is still work, but when your employees are engaged with you, you are engaged with them, and they are engaged with each other, it makes it so much harder for them to leave because they have a connection with whom they work. 

Make sure all matters regarding money are clear and accurate. The surest way to lose people is if you are stingy with money. You need to pay fair and competitive wages, be timely and accurate, and if you are able, provide benefits. 

Create memorable moments by letting your people know how much you appreciate them. Rewards don't always have to be money, but whatever you use to reward, don't be cheap about it. Whatever you give them as a reward needs to be genuine and they need to feel valued.

Your actions speak way louder than your words. Your people watch every move you make, so demonstrate excellence at work. People want to work for people they like and respect, and the only way to earn that is through demonstrating you care about the quality of your work, and you care about your people.

The old ways of ruling with an iron fist are outdated and no longer effective. You need to become a leader whom others want to follow. That is how you solve the problem of turnover. 

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Mickey Quinn is the executive director of the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce.