“Continued Engagement” for long service employees!
What needs to happen!
I am going to start with a slight contradiction! While low staff turnover is to be both admired and also to be a target, a small degree of turnover can be good for the business! It keeps people fresh, and new blood can be healthy! The key of course is who you lose!
One of the challenges can be your long service employees…Not everyone wants to climb the career ladder, and there are only so many different roles etc.!
Research by Harvard shows that just 5% of employees are in the “perfect zone”. With over ten years of service and in roles that perfectly suit them! When you consider this statistic, it suggests that few organizations are examining their long service employees to enable “best performance”.
- You may be lucky…The long serving employees are happy in their work…But could they take on more? This should not be an excuse for overloading, but a chance to sit down and talk with them on a 121 basis. Thank them! Ask for their thoughts…They will have much knowledge. Are there better ways that they can contribute? Never assume!
- Tap into their knowledge…They could be great mentors for new employees, or people new to their role. Care needs to be taken here. We need to distinguish between long service employees who are fully engaged, as opposed to those who may have picked up bad habits simply due to time in the role…I.E. Would you pass your driving test, if you took it again!
- If your business is of reasonable size, internal transfers can be considered. In fact, in large organisations, where departments rely on each other yet often operate as silos, this can prove to be an advantage and one that may benefit all. Knowledge helping to create a seamless interface!
- Long service employees will have encountered most of the challenges that invariably any business will from time to time encounter. They have been there! New challenges are not always new, but subtle variations. Seek their advice and even pair them up with someone relatively new (with fresh ideas), to develop solutions to those challenges
- Never assume and let them become “part of the furniture”! Hunt them out and actively engage with them!
Above all, never stop developing your existing talent, and flag employee lengths of service to ensure that you are increasing their influence as opposed to stagnating.
“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”