Employee Retention: Ways to Keep Your Top Talent From Jumping Ship

'Jump from ship'

Image Source: bearstaffblog.com

Training employees is a delicate balancing act. If you do a decent job, you risk losing them to your competitors. If you don’t do a good job, they get frustrated and leave. Where’s the sweet spot? Many companies have felt the frustration and sting of putting $100,000 into employee training only to lose them 12 months later. Here’s how to avoid that train wreck and keep your talent from jumping ship.

Give Stellar Training

Don’t give good training. Don’t give decent training. Give stellar training. Most companies do a “good enough” job, hoping to give employees the kind of training that is cost-effective yet doesn’t cost so much that they lose money when employees leave.

And that’s the fatal flaw in this approach – you can’t set up training programs assuming that your staff with leave you. Sure, you’re going to lose people here and there, but you can’t assume that from the get-go. Doing so will set you up for failure. You’ll be expecting people to leave, so you’ll cut corners on training. Then, sure enough, your prophecy becomes self-fulfilling.

Instead of being like every other company out there, you could try putting together a stellar custom training program that keeps employees engaged, gives when incentives for ongoing improvement, and allows them to move at their own pace. Companies like K Alliance specialize in this type of training. Track progress, motivation, and get valuable feedback on how to improve your program.

Use Golden Handcuffs

The use of financial incentives tied into training is something used by large corporations, but there’s no reason why it can’t be used by small companies too. The concept of “golden handcuffs” means that you provide conditional financial rewards for employees in exchange for guaranteed minimum service.

For example, you might provide ongoing training for 10 years to groom an employee for a management position. During this time, you might set aside a significant amount of money that the employee will receive when his training is complete. You could even specify that the employee is restricted from gaining access to these funds until after a certain minimum number of years after training – say 10 or 20 years.

Many companies do this kind of thing to supplement an employee’s income at retirement, using annuities and cash value life insurance as the vehicle for the bonus arrangement.

Create Opportunities For Advancement

No one likes to be stuck in the same job forever. People want to move up, move ahead, and feel like they’re achieving something. Give your employees the opportunity to move ahead in your company. Institute manager-in-training programs. Reward the most productive in your company with managerial titles and pay that’s commensurate with the title.

Help employees pay for additional schooling that will help them better understand their position at your company, earn them a higher paycheck, and give them the opportunity to climb the ranks.

Finally, consider cultivating an atmosphere that encourages creativity within the workplace. So many employers discount the value of employee contributions to the product and service line. They tend to leave this up to upper-level management when employees are fully capable of contributing valuable ideas.

Guest Post by:

Anthony Buckley loves finding effective methods of improving employee productivity and satisfaction. He enjoys blogging about his experiences and helping others make smart employee choices.

About Guest Author

Guest Author has written 9 post in this blog.


  1. Sunday says:

    Well, I am pretty sure many employers don’t have idea of giving stellar training and using golden cuffs to retain employees. It all boils down to maintaining the right principle and emphasizing integrity.

    The element of trust cannot be ignored with regards to employee retention. If the employee sees more credibility and confidence in the employer, then it becomes easy to trust and remain in the company!

    In kingged.com,where this post was bookmarked and syndicated, I have left that above comment.

    Sunday – kingged.com contributor

    • Qasim says:

      Hi Sunday,

      I totally agree with you, however having a plan for employee career improvement is just one way companies can show their employees that they are trustworthy. Thanks for your comment.

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