“We cannot get good staff!”
“We cannot keep our staff!”
“Staff turnover is too high!”
“We cannot achieve our guest satisfaction targets as we can’t keep up with training as turnover is too high!”
These were the words echoed by many at a recent meeting I attended of industry leaders, and since then I have had several discussions where the same sentiments have been echoed. It doesn’t seem to be location specific.
We are an industry of “humans serving humans,” and if we want to inspire people to join and remain with our team, we need to create an internal culture that is a sought-after place to be a part of and leaving a touch decision to make!
“Hire for attitude and train for skills”: I am sure this is not the first time you have heard these words, but why am I hearing these same words so many times during my 40-plus years in the industry?
What is attitude?
When considering this blog, I thought how often I have heard this same answer as a solution to issues related to retaining employees. But why after all these years are we talking about the same issue?
Attitude is a combination of thoughts, feelings and actions, and when we talk about a person having a positive attitude this means that an individual’s thoughts, feelings and actions are aligned towards achieving positive results.
Companies spend a lot of money and resources looking for these “positive attitudes” but still find that they have an issue in retaining these employees. I believe we may need to turn this issue on its head and consider it from a different perspective.
When we hire a positive attitude, but the family/culture they join is not aligned with their positive outlook on life – what will be the result? Are we taking the time to ensure our company culture is such that people with a positive attitude feel welcome and able to maintain their positive outlook?
Are our managers and leaders trained to celebrate and reinforce positive-minded individuals, do we create an environment where positive-minded individuals feel they can grow, do we communicate the importance of having a positive attitude, and what behaviors do we consistently reinforce and recognize?
Creating a strong internal culture is not a “nice to have” and is not, as has been indicated to me in the past, something that is “warm and fuzzy” rather than a critical element of business growth. If you want people to stay with you, then create the environment that makes it difficult to leave.
Let’s challenge the assumption that there is no one to employ but instead create a culture where nobody wants to leave, and everyone wants to be a part of it!
A colleague once said to me that there are two important questions that indicate a company’s success in building its internal culture. Can you think what these would be?
1. “What do you think of working for your company?”
2. “Would you recommend family/friends to work for your company?”
Consider the responses to these two questions for your own company. Be honest and the answers will give you an indication of what you need to do to create and build an internal culture that positive attitudes want to join and remain with.
Actions speak louder than words! Take action today to create and lead a culture that attracts, retains and celebrates positive attitudes.