How to Stop Your Rock-Star Talent From Fleeing

With many startups vying for top talent, here are some tips for keeping top talent at your company.

learn more about Carolyn Betts

By Carolyn Betts


Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

With talent wars waging on for top talent, entrepreneurs need to make sure they treat their employees well. Otherwise, they might jump ship.

While many founders believe upping an employee's salary will keep them happy, the reality is the correlation between job satisfaction and compensation is very weak, according to recent studies.

Instead of -- or perhaps in addition to -- forking over more money to appease your staff, entrepreneurs should consider implementing these practices:

Implement a kickass company culture
People spend a large portion of their lives at work, so having a positive work environment is critical. Make sure people feel valued, are comfortable and have respect for others in the office. At my firm, we celebrate birthdays with cupcakes and employee anniversaries with team lunches. We also go beyond the office walls when building our culture with an annual trip to Lake Tahoe.

If people are happy coming into work and bond with co-workers as friends, it can greatly improve retention.

Related: Seven Ways to Boost Employee Morale

Ensure perks are aligned with employees' needs
Cater benefits around your team's culture and interests. The best way to go about this is simply ask employees what they want and take action. If you have an active employee base, you may want to consider hosting weekly yoga or boot camp classes. If a large portion of your employees commute, you may want to implement a subsidized commuter program. Be creative but make sure the perks are in line with your employees' wants.

Related: 5 Ways to Keep Employees From Checking Out on the Job

Get on the same page as your millennial staff
With so much of the workforce being made up of millennials, knowing how to motivate them is important. This generation enjoys hearing feedback, so telling them what they are doing well or need to improve upon is expected. One reason for this is millennials believe their jobs are an extension of their education, so they want to feel their learning is continued. A good strategy for this mentality is to set up a mentor program, which will allow for both new and more senior employees to feel valued.

Provide a career path for employees
If you have employees that are coming up on their yearly employment anniversary, take the time to ask them where they see themselves growing within the organization. Share your thoughts with where you see them headed and what opportunities exist for them to continue to be challenged.

What other tips do you have for keeping employees happy? Let us know in the comments below.

Carolyn Betts

Founder and CEO of Betts Recruiting

Carolyn Betts is the Founder and CEO of Betts Recruiting. She is a Bay Area native and lives in San Francisco. Previous to starting Betts, Carolyn had worked in sales and recruiting. In 2013, Carolyn was selected as one of AA-ISP’s Top 25 Most Influential Inside Sales Professionals and is a finalist for the 2013 Ebbies Change Leader Award.

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