At an event a few years ago, I was asked what I thought was the number one thing that organizations needed to focus on in the current economy. My answer is always the same...your people. "Take good care of your people in this economic downturn, especially the ones you want to keep, because when the economy picks back up those organizations that take good care of their people will retain them, and those that don't will see them leaving." But as things go, the economy went farther south than anyone was expecting and 'taking care of your people' was hard to do. I get this. However, what we are seeing in the workplace is exactly what I had predicted. Great employees are now looking for a better opportunity, a better culture, authentic leadership, a great place to work, a bit more flexibility...all sorts of things and they are not always about 'more money'.
Among our research efforts, we track the job search market here in the DC Metro area to see who is hiring and why. Where are people going? Which organizations have a large number of openings, and why.. all of these things give us clues as to what is really happening in the marketplace.
What can you do if you seem to be loosing some of your best talent? Four things:
See a few key themes here? Real data and information is critical. Getting real about the situation and coming to terms with reality. Being authentic and speaking truth to your employees. Examining culture is critical. All of these things lead to a healthy organization and help to retain your best talent who remain during a healthy economy as well as the downturns.
Amy Riccardi is the Chief People Officer and Founder of HCM2020. She's a guest lecturer at Georgetown and George Washington Universities and works with executive teams and CEOs to help scale and grow their business.