In the war against plummeting employee retention rates, the statistics are grim. According to a 2021 study—
73 % of employees would consider leaving their jobs for the right offer, even if they weren’t actively on the prowl for new employment.
74% of younger employees would accept a pay cut for an opportunity to work at their ideal job
23% of those seeking a job wouldn’t need a pay increase to take a new position.
Do you know who will not stick around? Employees who feel unheard, whose legitimate complaints and feedback appear to go “in one ear and out the other.” And in the environment of today’s world, as businesses struggle to return to pre-pandemic normal, those legitimate concerns may fill a lengthy list. Factor in the incredible “candidate’s market,” and employees may be quick to jump ship.
We understand. Battling supply chain issues, lingering COVID-19 restrictions, and sundry inconveniences has many business owners hanging on by their fingertips. Even a relatively minor exodus of quality employees could be the tipping point.
Don’t worsen the already dire situation by failing to listen to and act upon your employee’s genuine concerns. While we grasp the importance of responding to customer feedback—the foundation of creating long-term, satisfied customers—that mindset doesn’t always transition to the management/employee relationship.
Lost customers spell less revenue. The same goes for employees who move on. Their loss impacts revenue in multiple negative ways. First, expenses related to turnover can seriously hammer the bottom line. And then there’s the hit that production/service/sales may take when holes in the workforce can’t be filled quickly enough.
So, how can businesses stem the flow of “feeling unheard” employees turning in their notice?
Take “active” listening a step further with “authentic” listening.
Go beyond the suggestions for making the speaker feel heard—look them in the eye, nod in affirmation, etc.—to intentionally tuning in. Pull the conversation to a quiet corner or a private office. Resist the urge to get it over quickly. Instead, ask questions to clarify and reiterate to check for an accurate understanding. Make a conscious effort to turn off immediate dismissal or judgments.
Act upon what you hear.
You heard what John had to say. And it is evident that he felt heard; his expressions and demeanor confirmed it. Now what? It’s time for action! Does that mean that you implement John’s suggestions ASAP? Maybe. But if John’s idea is impractical and not the right move, then what? You dissect his comments and dig below the surface of his ideas because there’s likely a useable nugget tucked in there somewhere. And even if there isn’t something of value to be gleaned from his thoughts, you’ll be reaching out to John – soon. Express appreciation for him coming to you. Share implementation plans or explain what won’t work and why, along with your insights about that one truly golden nugget or a suggested compromise. The long and the short of it is that John will know his feedback did not go in one ear and out the other.
The A.R. Mazzotta team is tuned into the challenges of today’s candidate-driven job market. Their comprehensive approach to staffing begins with investing the time and effort to uncover the uniqueness of each client’s staffing needs. So let A.R. Mazzotta be your staffing-solutions partner.