How NOT to lose employees: Insights on employee retention


In competitive job markets, retaining high quality talents and employees can be problematic. Aside from the existence of countless other growth opportunities, issues with the management, personal reasons, job fit and other issues can plague your employees and cause them to rethink their career within your company.

Human resource managers are often the first line of defense in ensuring that employees are maximised within their companies. After all, employee retention has great benefits for your company as it helps keep talented, experienced and brilliant individuals who have a deep understanding of your business, company culture and the industry it exists in.

To address this pressing issue, we prepared some insights that can enlighten small and medium-sized entrepreneurs on how to retain employees and give them reasons to flourish, grow and be the best employees they can be within their company.


Clarify their roles.

From the very start, outline your employees’ job specifications and clarify the scope of their responsibilities. Establish performance metrics and let them know what performance you want to see from them right from the very start to reduce misalignment of expectations. Clearly communicate your concerns and expectations.


Let them know that you have plans for them.

Don’t just hire an employee to fill a job post. When hiring, understand that everyone expects to have a progression path that can let them know their status and position within the company. There should always be a ‘next level’ and internal targets unless you want your employees to constantly look outside your business for growth opportunities. Create careers, not jobs.


Give credit where credit is due.

Sometimes, a simple pat on the back and recognition is all your employees need to feel valued and recognised. While salary increase/bonuses might be asking for a little too much, rewards or simple gestures of appreciation for stellar performance and accomplishments should be given to underscore your company’s appreciation for great work.


Learn through exit interviews.

Get a pulse on what’s making your employees seek other opportunities. Use exit interviews and find out the things or issues that frustrate, trouble and concern them at your office. From there on, adjust and try to make compromises wherever they’re needed. If possible, don’t wait for exit interviews, annual reviews and structured interviews to know what’s happening among your employees. Try to approach them casually and reach out without any form of judgment or formality. Let them know that you want to make a better working culture where they can thrive as professionals.


It’s rarely just about the money.

People leaving your company isn’t always just about the money. Factors such as company culture, management relations, workload toxicity and frustrating clients could also affect their motivation to stay in your business. While you can’t always do much to address the other factors, find out what you can do and how to help your employees adjust. It’s not hand-holding or coddling, it’s about improving the internal processes to make your company worth working in and working hard for.


Topics: Human Resources, business management