Losing good staff is a serious bummer. It’s disruptive and costly. Our Boundless Team falters as we scramble to fill the void left behind. As a leader, it’s hard not to feel hurt and betrayed by someone we value deciding to leave. The default is to simmer with resentment and blame them for lack of loyalty.
If we don’t ask, “Could I have done anything differently?” we miss an opportunity to improve. The first area to look at improving is an underrated one: recognition. It’s a simple thing to implement, with astounding results.
Consider this insight from O.C Tanner*:
Recognition is the highest rated incentive for doing good work. Notice also the relatively smaller percentage of people who wanted more pay: 7%. And yet we sometimes throw money at departing staff in an effort to keep them.
What does this tell us? We need to invest more time, money, and energy in to recognition.
But what kind?
- A personal thank you
- Public acclaim
- Company awards
- Small gifts
- Lunch out
What works for some won’t work for others.
We’ve got to ask. We need to get to know our people. Then recognise them in the currency they value most.
Doing something is better than doing nothing!
How do you recognise people? Do you have a formal or informal program in place? What has worked best?
* From “The Drivers of Great Work” (Cicero Group research commissioned by the O.C. Tanner Institute, 2014) in the report, in the THE BUSINESS CASE FOR RECOGNITION: The latest research, compelling insights, and the benefits of effective recognition by O.C. Tanner.