Retaining Employees: The Key to Future Success

leadership Apr 03, 2019

"It is literally true that you can succeed best and quickest by helping others to succeed." – Napolean Hill

Perhaps one of the most critical pieces of our project management profession is th‘management’ piece. While this by nature often refers to managing project plans and execution- chances are, a large portion of your job is managing either direct employees or individuals who must report to you on varying aspects of the project. This means a critical part of your responsibilities is helping your teammates be successful within their role on your team.

One the best ways to guarantee success on future projects is to retain employees that have proven to be an asset to the team. Employee retention not only helps to maintain a productive work environment, but also saves time and money spent on training, and leads to additional future profitability. A dedicated employee who is both talented and committed to their job is someone who should be appreciated, and reminded that they are an essential part of your team’s success. Nurturing relationships with your teammates and chipping in to guarantee their success can actually be an important part of your own success as a project manager. After all, a well functioning team is one of the most critical components in the success of a project.

So, what can we do to help ensure that our best employees feel valued, and to further guarantee that they are invested in staying on for the long haul? Follow these tips from PDUs2Go on maintaining positive employee retention:

  1. Make them feel appreciated. One of the best ways to guarantee that an employee will stay where they are is to make sure they like where they are. Most people don’t require constant praise and financial rewards to be satisfied, but they do like to know that their hard work is appreciated. Remember to let them know!
  2. Keep an open line of communication. Communication is one of the most important components of a healthy work environment. Make sure that you are both approachable and accessible.
  3. Value their opinion. We can all use some helpful input from time to time, and allowing your teammates to weigh in on decisions can help them feel like a valued member of the team.
  4. Help them grow. One of the main reasons people leave a position is because they feel they have no growth potential. If you don’t believe you have room to grow, why would you stay? Make employees aware of their options for growth, and then help them achieve their goals!
  5. Give a little to get a lot. Does an employee need an extra day off to watch a sick child? Do they have to leave 15 minutes early for a softball league on Wednesdays? Most of the time, we can be a little flexible with scheduling when needed. These small actions speak volumes to our employees about their value to the team.
  6. Reward good work. We may not always be in a position to give someone a bump in pay mid-year, but we can recognize and reward a job well done. Something as little as a small token of appreciation or a free lunch can do a lot to boost morale when a more substantial show of appreciation isn’t available.

Treating our employees with respect, appreciation, and care is always a good strategy to engage. Employing these tactics can help you ensure that top team members are committed to staying for the long haul. If people seem discontent- reach out and ask them why. Chances are that a small change can often make a big difference in the satisfaction of your teammates. And after all- it is often the people involved in a project, and not just the process, that make it a success!

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