Remember the old saying? “People don’t quit a job; they quit a boss.” It’s true. People work for people, not companies. According to a recent survey by TINYpulse—a Seattle-based company that creates software that measures how employees feel and perform—the number one reason people leave jobs is poor management, effectively tanking employee retention. The good news? This gives employers an opportunity to up their game. And recruiters–you can overcome this obstacle by placing people with the right bosses first and with the right company second.
1. Hard Skills Can Easily Be Found
However, soft skills, work environment, personality, and career goals are not. One way you can ensure a great fit onto your team is by weaving questions about soft skills into your hiring strategy. Here’s what we mean: Let’s say we have a perfect candidate on paper for ABC Company. All the hard skills align, but we know that their work style requires a boss who gives them the freedom to explore solutions instead of working through a single way to reach a goal. We’re going to make sure that our candidate finds a boss who values their problem-solving ability; otherwise, they’ll soon be looking for another job!
2. Avoid Categorizing
Whatever you think you know about a certain demographic, leave it at the door. Millennials and creatives often get categorized, but we need to stay focused on the person in front of us. Maybe they offer a fresh perspective that’s badly needed. Maybe they have a skill set that can move your company to the next level. Look at the person in front of you, not the category.
3. Define Your Workplace Culture
Are you a permission-based employer or do you tend to let people innovate and say no later if it doesn’t work? How do you evaluate employees and how often? Do you have a flexible schedule that allows employees to work from home? Casual or formal? Fast-paced or laid back? The list goes on and on. What’s important is that you have defined your culture in such a way that you attract people who will thrive within it. This means that your mission statement and core values not only are on your website and in your job descriptions but also are lived out each day in your organization.
One person who lived out his company’s culture every day was Sam Walton. Back in the 1980s, we were fortunate to work with him and witnessed his philosophy first-hand. At that time we, placed the highest-paid executive in Walmart’s history and learned two valuable lessons from Sam’s leadership: 1) We’re all in this together. 2) Understanding a company’s culture is the most critical piece of a successful placement.
4. Tell Your Company’s Story
There’s a lot of noise on the Internet and social media. If your company has made significant changes in mission, philosophy, or organization, make sure that potential candidates know that. For example, maybe you’ve recently hired a new CEO who’s amazing to work for and turning your company around. Make sure he/she is visible on your website and social media, especially LinkedIn. Potential candidates will want to listen to the CEO’s webcasts and keynotes to determine if this is a person they want to work for.
5. Listen to Your Candidates and Employees
One more lesson from Sam Walton. He understood that people want to make a contribution. Often, he would go into stores, talk to associates, and really listen to them. Some had great ideas that he’d bring back to the office and implement on Monday morning. Employees who are heard by their employers will feel valued and will be more likely to stay with you for a long time.
When you’re ready to start looking for your next team member, or are having difficulty finding the right fit, be sure to contact our team. Our years of experience have helped us to place numerous candidates, 74% of which are still in place.