Employee Retention Strategies - Thom Singer

We get so excited about potential, but potential does not equal results. But what if developing the potential in your people was on of the best employee retention strategies? Employee turnover is an expensive problem. If you can help your team members and increase job satisfaction, you retain employees. That is a win / win solution.

You never hire anyone unless you think they have potential. But what is potential? It is not tangible. Simply an idea or a feeling that the employer and the employee feels. You hire “Becky”, but a year later you are transitioning her out of the company? Why? If she had potential, why didn’t it work out.

There is a real gap between potential and performance. When we help encourage employee professional development they have more satisfaction. The investment to guide people to improve becomes one of the most powerful employee retention strategies.

Employee Training To Cultivate Potential

Bringing in outside experts shows the investment in people. Employees know there is a cost involved with speaker / trainers, and when they like the workshop, they feel they are a priority to the company. Many managers say “Nobody can motivate my team like I can”, but hearing the same message from the same people does not have a lasting impact. Plus many people do not respect their boss as much as the boss believes. An outside expert allows fresh ideas to flow into the company culture.

Companies that invest in training tend to have higher levels of employee retention. A June 2018 article in Forbes shows how and why that developing employees leads to retention.

Mentorship Programs Are Employee Retention Strategies

Many companies are getting smart about mentorship programs and how they are key employee retention strategies. Having great mentors inside the company leads people to feel more connected to the organization (both the mentors and the mentees). Getting your people to educate and learn from each other creates bonds.

Most mentor programs fail because they are not well thought out. I have written about “what is a mentor”, and mentorship many times, and often work with companies on how to create a work environment where mentorship becomes part of the culture. All the studies show that people will stay longer if they have friends at work.

It Is NOT About Work Life Balance

We spend a lot of time inside companies talking about “work life balance”. But I have never believed in balance. We are always out of balance, and making achieving this fictional balance sets everyone up to fail. Wellness expert Eliz Greene talks about shattering the myth of work life balance”. In her work she shows that it is not about the balance, but limiting stress that is one of the strongest employee retention strategies. We need to show people that we care about the whole person. People get a strong feeling about their company when the company cares about their well being beyond the 9 to 5. Companies that support tuition reimbursement for their staff members, allowing flexible schedules, and encourage vacation time are they ones who see the loyalty returned.

Employee Engagement Is Employee Retention

If you want employee engagement, then managers must be engaged. It is a two-way street. If you are doing things to improve employees, they will want to stay. An engaged workforce should be the goal of all employee retention strategies. It is rare that people leave a place where they feel they are part of the family.

Your team can attain more. They want to reach their potential. It is normal for employees to desire to engagement. But too many companies only focus on productivity. Workplace Productivity Training is NOT enough. Doing more of the wrong things without meaningful engagement is not an employee retention strategy. In fact, it is often a way to drive people way.

Consider Thom Singer

If you are planning employee training, consider bringing me to your company to present my workshop “Attain the Possible – The Paradox of Potential”. I have surveyed over 500 people about the gap between potential and performance, and can help your employees discover that is holding them back. Additionally the workshop is interactive and everyone gets to share their ideas on how to navigate the gap to ensure the whole team finds more success.

In preparing to speak to your team we will have in depth conversations about your employee retention strategies and how investing in training can be an important part of building the connection with employees.


Thom Singer is a keynote speaker and professional master of ceremonies/ EmCee. He speaks to groups of all sizes about the power of connections and ways to attain their potential. He is the host of the “Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do” podcast and the author of 12 books.