Lee Travis, chief executive of the New Model Business Academy, offers his top tips on how to motivate and retain the existing talent in your business.
It’s true: you don’t know what you have got until it’s gone. With lots of talk about growing businesses, one thing any business owner should never take their eyes off is retaining existing talent, particularly if the team is working extremely effectively as a unit.
All it takes is for one key member of the team to resign and you could be left with a void that is very hard to fill – never mind potentially costly – without any guarantees that a replacement will be as effective. See a trend of leavers and you have major problems, so it can never be taken for granted.
I am not just talking about advisers here. I am talking about all staff – every cog in the wheel that turns your business. If a business can be defined as ‘a profitable, commercial enterprise that works without you’, a continuous priority must be to retain your valued staff.
How should you nurture talent?
The good news is that there are many measures you can put in place to maximise the likelihood of keeping your staff over the long term.
Although is it unlikely for any business to maintain a 100% staff retention record, by following and embedding some simple, yet very important, principles in two key areas – financial and non-financial incentives – you can create even more loyal, productive and happier staff.
So, if you already have a good team working with you and want to keep hold of them, here are some suggestions of what you can do.
Competitive financial/benefits package
Ensure you are aware of current market rates in the sector for each of the roles within your business. Design a remuneration offering that gives the best overall financial package to high quality people. On top of this competitive basic salary, consider additional extras such as an attractive pension scheme, death in service, critical illness cover, permanent health insurance, additional holidays, mobile phone or car scheme, etc. (subject to role and seniority).
Bonuses – structured or ad hoc
Bonuses should not be viewed as a ‘gimme’. Remember that bonuses are just that: a payment for over-performing in one’s role. While some bonuses can be built-in and guaranteed for an initial period of time for new recruits, in order for a bonus scheme to be viable, it needs to be linked to something financial for exceeding expectation and success.
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