Managing Organizational Change: Employee Retention Will Present a Challenge

Oct 26, 2009

Planning for the recession to be over? Good. For most companies, that means decisions involving being able to meet increased demand, taking advantage of new opportunities, even renegotiating contracts with vendors or suppliers.

But, what if you lose a bunch of your employees?

Wait, losing employees? Aren’t they happy they even have jobs in an economy like this? True, right now you could look at the economy as an employer’s market- for every job posting right now there’s several times the applicants than there were a couple years ago. We recently caught this bit on a New York Hospitality Services Blog:

One consequence of the severity of the recession has been a surfeit of talent across industries looking for opportunities as few, if any, employers were hiring. That may change sooner than later as this survey by Intuit, a provider of payroll services finds that “that (of) nearly half of small business owners surveyed, 44 percent, are planning to hire new employees within the next 12 months. At the same time, many small business owners believe that benefits are key to attracting new hires but are finding them difficult to afford.”  Interesting findings of that survey include the fact that family and friends of current employees make for good new hires as well as that long term relationships with employees matter.

So, as the economy eases out of recession, we may see a massive surge in hiring- which means it’s more important than ever to keep your employees engaged. Forbes.com also weighs in on the issue with an analogy and some wise words:

Employees are like elephants: They watch, and they remember. They know how they were treated in the bad times, and how their fallen colleagues were treated, too. They form long-lasting impressions of their employers. And they are already planning what to do about it.

I’m not sure that your employees will want to be compared to elephants, but the fact remains that businesses need to be serious about employee satisfaction and employee engagement as the recession lifts, or else they could find their best and brightest lured away.

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