Page 26 - Wire Rope News & Sling Technology - August 2018
P. 26

How to Keep Your “A” Players

                                                   by Phillip M. Perry

         In a labor market growing tighter every month, employers must take steps to
         obviate the loss of their top performing employees to aggressive competitors.
         Key actions include implementing “pay for performance” systems and assuring
         lateral or vertical advancement pathways. Employers should also provide frequent
         performance feedback and allow star performers sufficient autonomy.

            t’s  a  nightmare  scenario  for  any
            business: A star employee suddenly
         Idecides to jump ship for the compe-
         tition. Out the door goes years of expe-
         rience, in-depth knowledge of sales and
         marketing plans, and even a good num-
         ber of hard-won customer connections.
           It’s  that  last  part,  with  its  costly
         ramifications, that can cause the most
         immediate damage. “Customers  will
         often follow a departing employee out
         the door to his or her new employer,”
         says Richard Avdoian, an employee de-
         velopment consultant  in  Metropolitan
         St. Louis. (MidwestBusinessInstitute.
         com). “People like to stay with employ-
         ees they trust.”
           Longer range, the ghosting of a top                                                                   illustration © CraigRJD |iStockphoto
         performing employee obviates any
         plans for grooming that person for a
         management role. “When you lose your
         best employees you lose not only their
         skills but also their leadership poten-  hesitate to jump ship? Maybe so, but   perform their duties in a conscientious
         tial,” says David Dye, President of Lets   the fact remains that people who per-  and dependable manner, serving as re-
         Grow Leaders, a management  con-   form the best in the workplace tend to   liable anchors to your business. The fi-
         sulting  firm  in  Washington  DC  (lets-  suffer the most from wandering eyes.   nal category consists of people who out-                  A survey by SAP and Oxford Econom-  perform the norm. “High achievers are
                                            ics,  published  in  The  Harvard  Busi-  driven go getters,” says Avdoian. “They
         Tight market                       ness Review (“What High Performers   are  your  most productive employees.”
           Expect more star employees to seek   Want at Work,” by Karie Willyerd. No-  These individuals can deliver up to 400
         greener pastures in the months ahead,   vember 18, 2014) found less than half   percent  more productivity to a work-
         and fewer quality replacement pros-  of high performers satisfied with their   place than other employees, according
         pects. With the nation’s unemployment   current  duties.  One  in  five  is  likely   to the HBR report.
         level hovering  just  over the four  per-  to seek a greener pasture in the next   With this short list in hand, make
         cent level, most economists believe the   six months. “Top performers are often   sure  you give your  best people the
         labor market has reached a condition of   less than content with their jobs,” says   specific things they need to keep them
         full employment. As top-quality talent   Avdoian. “Many want to further their   on board. And just what do they want
         grows scarce, other employers in your   careers by moving on to more promis-  more than anything else? The answer
         region will try harder than ever to lure   ing positions.”            is  probably  not  surprising:  The  HBR
         away your best people.                                                report found that top performers care
           “When demand for personnel is high   Spot the stars                 significantly  more  than  average  or
         and supply is low,  people have more   So  how  do you keep  your  own  best   low-performing ones about competitive
         choices  for  where  to work,”  says Dye.   people  from  jumping  ship?  The  first   compensation.  You  must offer  them a
         “Employers have greater difficulty re-  step is to make sure you focus on the   salary commensurate with their skills
         taining the best performers,  and the   brightest stars. Avdoian suggests look-  and at least equal to what other em-
         value rises for those individuals’ work   ing at your employment pool as a com-  ployers in your region provide.
         skills.” In rural areas especially, where   plex of three classes of workers on an
         employers reside far from large cities   escalating scale of value: slackers, foun-  Pay for performance
         with concentrated pools of talent, qual-  dationals, and high  achievers.  Slack-  High performers also care more than
         ity employees come at a premium.   ers are easy to spot: They do the bare   their slacker or foundational cowork-
           How  about  your  own  business?  Do   minimum to collect  their  paychecks.   ers about the ability to earn bonus pay
         you think your top performers will   Foundational employees, in contrast,              continued on page 28

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