Guest Blog – How Communication Keeps Your Best Talent

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There’s 32 million missing people. Seriously, your talent pool has shrunk by that many candidates. Think about what this demographic trend means to your talent retention strategy. There were 76 million Baby Boomers (age 40 to 58) available for work. They’re retiring. The Generation X (ages 25-34) replacements number 44 million people. That’s a lot fewer people available to work. The job of recruiting, hiring, and retaining talented people is getting harder, and arguably more expensive.

The job for life is officially a legend, the stuff of myth. Job hopping, perpetual career change, entrepreneurial pursuits, and an all out acceptance of free agency is today’s workplace reality. People’s performance is ultimately dictating your company’s productivity and profitability. Attrition happens. But, needless attrition has to be addressed. Remember that the costs of replacing an employee are estimated to be between 50-300% of their salary. Those kind of costs can turn your bottom line red in a hurry. With the notion of loyalty almost impossible to sell it’s more important than ever that your talent retention gameplan is a winner.

Accepting you can’t offer a job for life, and that many candidates don’t want a job for life it’s more important than ever to effectively communicate values that matter today. Career opportunities matter. Career isn’t just about advancing through the ranks.  With the boomers retiring and a new generation entering management and other important roles, motivations and goals are changing along with them. Notions of growth, social and global opportunities, aligned with purpose and meaning resonate with many of our younger generation.

An environment of fun, collaboration, openness and engagement with everyone in an organization matters. Many business are getting leaner and flatter, and the old siloed hierarchies are becoming less and less attractive. More people are seeing their career as an open two way conversation, versus the historical top down communications flow. People will be deferential if their voices are being heard.

The work environment shapes and defines the success of your people, and thus your business. Look at your organization through the lens of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. When someone feels “safe”, such as feeling they are fairly paid, they’ll likely look for more meaningful value in the workplace. It’s more important to know the right questions versus having all of the right answers. You want your people to be asking questions like, is this role maximizing my skills? Am I appreciated? Do I fit in with this culture? Am I proud of the work this company does?

Communicate with your talented people and let them know they’re highly valued. Be specific with the reasons why. Have a program of continuous assessment, feedback and coaching in place. Make sure their current role is helping with their personal development, as well as engaging and rewarding. Publicly and personally recognize people. Occasional rewards should to be part of your process too.

Ask your people why they stay. As opposed to an exit, these “stay” interviews can find you asking questions such as:

  • Why did you choose to work here?
  • Why are you still here?
  • Why would you leave?
  • What’s non-negotiable for you?
  • What about your managers?
  • What would you change or improve?

These answers will bolster your talent retention practices.

Like a fine wine, many of your best people will “appreciate” over time. They gain vital organization knowledge and wisdom. The longer people stay together the more productive they’ll become. They learn the systems, they learn the products, and they learn how to work together. With a sound talent retention strategy based on effective communications, you’ll maintain the organizations core cultural values.

“A mind stretched by a new idea can never go back to its original dimension.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes


As VP of Marketing, Bimal Parmar manages the global marketing strategy and execution at Celayix.  With  over 20  years industry experience, Bimal is responsible for making sure the world learns about the  benefits of  Celayix’s  solutions that include: advanced employee scheduling, time and attendance, employee  communication as  well as  integration modules for payroll and billing.