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  • Writer's pictureKathy Andrews

Keeping the Band Together: 5 Creative Employee Retention Strategies for Your Business

Imagine your company as a rock band.

Upper management might be the front of the group, but these folks are only as good as the people they're performing alongside.

It would be difficult for any band to maintain high standards and develop not only relationships with one another but relationships with fans if the members are always changing.

How can you ensure your "band" grows and continues to be successful while keeping your group together?

Employee turnover could be costing you thousands of dollars each year. Some turnover can be a good thing, but when you lose high performers (your Rock Stars), the cost of finding and training replacements is high.

Yet companies remain wary of investing in effective retention strategies for their employees.

Why is that?

Maybe they assume it will be expensive, but this isn't necessarily true – workers aren't always looking for the biggest paycheck whenever they're looking for a place to work.

Here are five creative employee retention strategies that will help you keep your band together.

1. Keep the Music Interesting.

Employees working on similar tasks over and over again can become repetitive and feel like a chore. When employees disengage from their work and become less invested in the work, they're more likely to leave the job.

Why not try to "gamify" the tasks required?

Gamification is a powerful way of taking monotonous, routine, disengaging tasks, and turning them into something employees are more motivated to complete and to do well. It is also a means to provide rewards for a job well done.

You might think that gamification is more popular with younger workers; however, it has shown to help with employee retention and employee productivity in general.

Even the Royal Canadian Air Force has gotten behind the idea of gamification, investing money to make their training and engagement even more effective.

2. You're Never Too Old To Learn a New Instrument. 

Mentorship has become very popular in the last decade or so, and for a good reason.

However, reverse-mentorship has yet to "catch on" in the popular zeitgeist. Reverse mentorship is whenever a younger or less experienced (in the workplace) employee mentors a more senior colleague.

It doesn't necessarily have to be age-related but should be skills-based, recognizing that everyone at every stage of their career has something to teach and something to learn. 

Check out my blog here, where I talk about the flaws of focusing on generational differences in the workplace.

3. Remote Rockstars.

Along the lines of intrapreneurship, another way to show employees you trust them is to give them options like flexible working hours or remote work options.

Even musicians don't need to be in the same room to create some great music.

Here is a recording of the Reddit Symphony Orchestra, a group of people who met on the social media website, submitted their tracks, and the overall piece was put together by a great project manager.

You could do something similar with your employees.

Everyone knows their part to play, show them you know they'll do an excellent job by letting them get the work done from wherever they wish or on hours that fit their schedules best.

A great bonus – flexible work is a great way to support working parents, and they're more likely to stick with you.

4. Let Your Bandmates Fly Solo. 

Sometimes bands will be wildly successful because they all take time off to work on their solo projects.

Genesis was wildly popular, but both lead singers Peter Gabriel and Phil Collins had successful solo projects while the band was active as well.

The same could be said for Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac. Why not try some intrapreneurship within your company as well? Employees are happy when they are encouraged to follow their pursuits.

And their success would be your success as well.

Not only are your employees likely to stick around to develop their passion projects, but you could have a lot to gain by potentially aiding your employees with their entrepreneurial instincts from within your company.

5. Use the Metallica Method.

Hire a team coach to help your team! 

When legendary rock band Metallica faced internal strife, and members wanted to disband the group, they hired a qualified team coach to help them learn to work together more effectively.

Talking about the coach they hired, James Hetfield said, "He did take us to the place where we wanted to go to. He did walk us into the fire and walked us out the other side. He showed up at the right time." 

The right coach can help your team learn to work together more effectively, and they can help your leaders learn to become strong leaders. 

This kind of work is our bread and butter – we've got years of combined experience in assisting teams to learn to work cohesively together and achieve great results.

Employee retention is essential for everyone. Especially your fans (i.e. your customers). It strengthens your team, improves morale, and creates an overall stable business. Don't wait to start working on a solution for your organization. Contact us here to discuss the retention possibilities that would fit best with your company!

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