In the last blog ‘Damage Limitation – Reducing The Loss When Your Employees Are Poached By Competitors’ my colleague Dave Warren quoted a recent CIPD People Management article ‘Who’s After Your Staff?’ [September 2014] which suggested poaching is an increasingly worrying trend in some sectors. No organisation wants to lose its key employees that it has spent time and money training, especially to its competitors. At a time when training and development budgets have been slashed it is vital that organisations are mindful of the link between recognition and coaching as a way to improve staff performance and retention.

Managers need to find the time to talk to their direct reports. Dave Olsen, CEO at Walton Consultancy, found 90% of employees say recognition makes them better motivated. Tom Peters, the world famous management Guru, has said the four most important words for a manager are “What do you think?” That it is the person actually doing the job who knows how to do it best. Employees have opinions and you, the organisation, want to hear them. Involve employees, listen to what they have to say, give them a voice in decision making.

Also, research suggests employees want to be stretched and helped to find their own answers and solutions. The importance of a manager’s role in coaching their direct reports to facilitate achievement of their goals and objectives, builds the skills and expertise to produce the results the organisation needs. Fraser Marlow, Head of Research at Blessing White found 87% of direct reports agree or strongly agree that “in general, I like to be coached.” Coaching is seen by two thirds of staff as greatly improving job performance and job satisfaction. Fraser Marlow found only 52% of employees said they were coached. We can infer from this that managers are not doing as much coaching as they should to develop and support staff.

For an organisations leaders and managers ensuring a coaching and recognition culture is a low cost, no cost option of motivating and retaining employees. People, relationships, involvement and recognition matter especially in today’s tough competitive business world. The message is clear for organisations who want to keep key staff and retain their competitive edge.

Author: Karen Patrick

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