There is nothing more frustrating than having a well-designed succession plan hit a roadblock when young, up-and-coming stars leave the company for a seemingly better or more promising opportunity. Many companies do a great job of preparation, training, and planning, but forget one very important key to a successful succession plan: retention.
It is important to consider what your company is doing to retain its key employees/succession candidates. Here are five tips:
- Coaching and mentoring can be a very important practice. First, it offers the employee a confidant; someone they can speak with comfortably. It also provides the benefit of advice and constructive counsel to the mentee, typically from someone who is more experienced and wiser in the organization’s culture.Done well, it also provides some insight into what the employee is thinking and feeling about the organization. Any hints of attitudinal changes or expressions of concern can be quickly dealt with and addressed.
- All supervisors should be adequately trained in people skills. Companies can lose high performing succession candidates simply because their supervisors do not understand how their supervisory practices and interpersonal skills impact those they are supervising. Training in how to properly provide feedback and encouragement can be an important element in allowing supervisors to be effective in leading teams. There is an old adage that says, “People quit their bosses, not their jobs.” Making sure supervisors have the proper training can help retain up-and-coming stars within the organization.
- Make sure your high potential candidates are challenged. Your best succession candidates are those who are intellectually curious and are always looking for the next new project or task that is going to stimulate them. There is nothing more frustrating for this type of person than to be stuck doing the same tasks day after day. When a high potential candidate is identified, it is critically important that the organization identify a possible path for that individual and provide them with greater and greater responsibility. Many people leave jobs in search of an opportunity that is more challenging and stimulating.
- A culture of promotion from within can be a very compelling reason for high potential individuals to stay with an organization. When companies grow their employees and promote from within, it sends a message that the organization cares and is willing to invest in its employees, and that there is opportunity for advancement that may not be available in another organization.
- It is common knowledge that few employees leave an organization solely because of money. That said, companies still need to be competitive with compensation packages and ensure they are offering packages that are consistent with the marketplace. Different types of deferred compensation packages seem to be gaining more and more traction these days. Most of these plans are tied to vesting periods in an effort to retain key employees over a period of years.
Contact us at 215.441.4600 or Email if you have questions or would like to discuss how this topic may impact your business.
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