One of the biggest challenges facing organizations today is finding and retaining the right talent for the job. Businesses have to become more and more competitive to survive in challenging economic times, and a key to doing this is staffing your company with a great team. Management has to adapt to changing environments and take on new approaches to hiring and retention to ensure a superstar team.
Here are the 12 Most powerful ways to staff your company with star employees:
1. Empower your company with great leaders
Leaders who are engaged, committed and motivated to work as part of the team.
2. Encourage your leaders to interact with their team members on a day to day basis
This ensures that they have a true sense of what is happening, and puts them in a position to always respond.
3. Know your environment
Determine what behaviors in the environment will generate reward for employees. Hire people who are motivated by what you have to offer.
4. Be open and authentic in presenting your company to new candidates
Give a thorough overview of what they can expect. Don’t just stick to job tasks. Include environment, team behavior, and walk them through what a day looks like in your company. Be as open with them and as authentic as you would be with your existing employees. Have you heard about how being authentic in Social Media is the key to success? Well being authentic when you are interviewing is also a key.
5. Allow the potential candidate to meet existing team members
Something that I do when hiring is to have existing team members meet with the candidate. I encourage the candidate to ask existing employees any questions they may have. This gives them a chance to feel if it is going to be a good fit from the start. Don’t wait for the first weeks of work for things to come up when it is too late and you’ve already spent your time and energy on the hire.
6. Take the opinion of current employees into consideration in the hiring process
Their perspectives are different than the hiring officer or the manager. These are the people who will be working closest with the new employee. Let them conduct their own “interview”. Existing employees can often shed light on people from a different perspective. They will have special insight that will contribute to the long term success of the team. Let them have candid talks with the new hire. Get their feedback. This also gives current star employees a sense of value and ownership of their own team. People who feel valued and empowered stay.
7. Get continuous feedback from employees on how things are going
Services such as Rypple or Cleargears allow for this kind of feedback in an anonymous way that allows people to express what is really going on. Getting this kind of feedback give you an opportunity for recognition, support and opportunities to identify potential issues in operations, morale or service. Addressing issues and being proactive keeps the environment positive and productive.
8. Recognize individuals and teams for their accomplishments regularly
Everyone feels good when something they do gets recognized. Organizations are machines. Star employees need to hear about how they are doing – machines can’t do this, but leaders and colleagues can. Create an environment where recognition on individual and team levels are part of the “routine”. Celebrate each others’ success, recognize both small and large accomplishments on a regular basis and people will thrive. (Rypple also provides an excellent, self managed tool for doing this easily).
9. Be trustworthy and reliable: listen and respond
Things go wrong, people have off days, humans have conflict – when this happens, listen. Listen to people and ensure that people know who they can talk to about issues. Clearly define and assign people to be there and resolve issues. Half of solving the problem is listening. Once you have heard the problem, be committed to respond, investigate and resolve issues. Part of being in a strong team is working together. Most importantly, however, is having someone for employees to rely on so they can focus on their work and do what they do best.
10. Create opportunities for people to be engaged
People who are happy in their positions are engaged. Hold meetings or activities that bring people together and use team communication to help everyone stay in the loop on an ongoing basis. Yammer is a great tool which I have used in my department to keep team communication active. Encourage idea sharing, value adding activities, and active participation. (Example: We have “Team Think” meetings and we also take our employees on activities like Dinner Cruises, Cocktail evenings, Bowling.) It is also important to have fun together.
11. Focus on strengths and give opportunity for development
Everyone may be doing the same job tasks, but every individual has their own strengths and special qualities. Managers should take the time to get to know each of their employees. be observant, ask questions and then develop an understanding of who they are, where their strengths are and what their goals are. Create opportunities in the team to use those strengths and reach those goals. Acknowledge these thing so people know they are valued and they matter as people to you. If you use the strengths of your people you will always have a winning team.
12. Do not lose your focus
Make a commitment to all of the above points and review yourself and your managers on a weekly or monthly basis. Are the employees of your firm happy? Do they feel recognized? Have you created touch points to stay in tuned with what is happening? Have you addressed issues and resolved problems? Have you created opportunities for people to use their strengths and develop their skills? Are people feeling fulfilled and rewarded? The importance of reviewing this regularly, and maintaining consistency is critical to ensuring you have created an environment where star employees can not only shine, but stay and drive the company forward.
When people are happy, feel engaged, recognized and are given opportunities they will thrive at their careers and in their job. Like attracts like – keep your superstars happy and the environment will thrive. This kind of engagement makes for an exceptional team, and this is what lays behind any great company: great employees.
Featured Photo Courtesy of suez92 via Creative Commons.
Mila Araujo is a Social Business Strategist and Speaker, she has a diverse background in management, public relations, non-profit, and events; she is a Director of Personal Insurance at Ogilvy & Ogilvy, Montreal. In her previous roles, Mila organized international conferences on health care, as well as programs to promote health for seniors and children in partnership with the Government of Canada. In 2009, she worked with Modica Communications on the development of the Centre for Excellence in Corporate Social Responsibility, part of the Canadian government's Corporate Social Responsibility strategy. Mila is a contributing author for several online sites, including 12 Most, Business2Community, Winning at the Insurance Gamble, Grow, and her own blog Perspectives featured in AllTop. Mila’s lived in Los Angeles, Paris, and Hawaii, and calls Montreal home. Mila is an active member of the Social Media community and Producer of #140 Conference Montreal. She’s passionate about connecting people, non-profits, employee engagement, leadership and using social tools for driving business to new levels.