How to Attract, Motivate and Retain your Best Employees

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Creative and forward thinking businesses who have progressed to become household and workplace names in recent years have sexy benefits that help to attract the best talent, keep them motivated and therefore retain the cream of the crop. This supports the business to grow into household names, like Twitter, Asana, Virgin, Facebook, Salesforce. The list goes on.

Granted that most of these are technical companies that need tech savvy employees who should ideally be IT geeks, yet creative. I believe the same principles apply to any business. If your business wants to grow and become a market leader then inevitably you need a strong team to aid that progress. You can’t always do this alone.

It’s not just about salary, this is just part of the reward package. Many studies have highlighted that money alone is not enough of a motivator, once our basic needs are met, humans need other aspects to be met to remain motivated. A business does not have to be a big business like the names I mentioned earlier. Granted they have bigger and deeper pockets to allow paid sabbatical leave, pay for fertility treatment or freezing of eggs because they want to attract more women but what is interesting is the reward is relative to what they want to attract.

If your business needs more creative people then reward them with benefits that help an employee to become creative, like have a music or games area where employees can go to away from their desk when they are feeling “stuck”. Organise a day out or pay for the employee to have a day out somewhere local like a zoo, museum, art gallery. Anywhere that facilitates creativity and it does not have to cost the earth.

Other simple yet effective benefits could be to allow 10 hours of flexible time per year, where employees could use if their child became ill or they had to attend a medical appointment, sports day, go and watch the nativity, visit an elderly relative, take their animal to the vet. A simple gesture helps you to retain your best staff.

High levels of absence with minor ailments? Then encourage wellbeing within your workplace. Lots of gyms offer subsidised gym membership to employees if an employer signs up. Speak to an independent health and wellbeing consultant about massage and nutrition afternoons. There are lots of consultant out there who specifically work with small businesses and understand the budget challenges of an SME.

Take a look at the resource you need to grow your business, identify the gaps in skills and who do you need to recruit to fill that gap. Then consider what you can do to attract, motivate and retain your most valuable resource, your employees.

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