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Retaining the best talent for your business

Retaining the best talent for your business

By James Caan CBE - June 12, 2020

Globally, people are dealing with the shock of the coronavirus pandemic, and it is no different here in Monaco. Jobs, livelihoods and even loved ones have been lost. So much has changed in such a short space of time, and the gravity of the situation is only just emerging. For businesses, the best way to tackle this challenge is by retaining your top talent. An organisation is only as good as the people within it. In 2020, the stakes have been raised.

Having been a businessman for over 30 years, I’ve experienced a number of crises, including the 87’ crash, the early 90’s recession, 9/11 and the financial crisis of 2008, where I’ve learnt some very valuable lessons. I have seen first hand how vital having a capable team is in steering organisations through difficult moments like this. In this piece, I will share my thoughts on the retention of talent and how you can help your team navigate these challenging times.

The best are overlooked

I’ve seen so many founders and CEOs take their top talent for granted. In some ways the best performers are victims of their own consistency. Senior people’s time is often taken up by the employees that aren’t doing their job so well. Disregarding high achievers puts your business at risk, especially in the current climate. Other companies are in the same boat as you, trying to retain and attract top talent that will help keep their business afloat. This is amplified in Monaco with such a globalised, mobile workforce.

The pandemic has created a philosophical time of reflection, and it’s becoming increasingly clear that the world is experiencing a seismic shift. Professionals that haven’t been recognised will be keeping their options open. You want your brightest and best working with you to tackle the challenges created by the pandemic head on. Implement practices now to ensure this is the case.

The best way to retain talent

The financial rewards of working in Monaco are great, even during this pandemic. A tax-efficient environment is fantastic for your workforce, but job fulfilment is only truly realised through a sense of progression. Training people to acclimatise to the current environment is going to be crucial. Investing in them is investing in your company as a whole. They will see improvements in their skills and prospects, making them an even greater asset to keep hold of. Inspire your team during this challenge and they will appreciate your efforts.

As human beings, we love to be appreciated. You need to show your appreciation for hard work. A simple ‘merci’ goes a long way and costs nothing. If you reward your employees, they’ll reward you. The pandemic has propelled mental health and wellbeing even further into the spotlight. You need to make sure you have mechanisms in place to cater for this. Support your colleagues – give them the tools they need to become successful in the current landscape.

Finally, make sure you pay your workers fairly. As much as we think our employees are with us for our ethos, their paycheck is a huge motivation for their contribution. It is therefore crucial that your remuneration structure is competitively positioned in your niche market.

Keep to the same principles

Whether you’re a tiny startup or a huge multinational, the formula for retaining talent remains the same. The rigidity of roles in large companies has been paused for the time being with a freeze in recruitment and the furloughing of millions of employees. Those left to run operations are having to adapt to tasks that weren’t originally in their job description.

History has taught me that adaptability of the workforce is a key factor in steering companies through tough times. Support your employees in the diversification of their skills, and you might not need to fill the vacancy you considered a gaping hole at the start of the year. Your focus should be on nurturing those that already work for you. Specialised roles could become a past phenomenon as companies move to make themselves ‘Covid-secure’.

Manage your resources and overheads in the most efficient way possible in the current environment. My second recruitment company, Humana International, was able to retain its top talent through very difficult circumstances and fortunately came out at the other end. What we found is that when markets recover, you typically see quite a strong recovery. We were then in a position to expand when the market grew stronger. We eventually grew to 140 offices in 30 countries. This wouldn’t have been possible without the long serving members of my team.

Leaders of the future

Nurturing talent is primarily the responsibility of the employer, but with the right processes in place there are numerous ways an employee can increase their chances of progression and display leadership credentials.

Without doubt, they have to be very good at what they do. They must also demonstrate the ability to go above and beyond their current role. They may already be doing so in this time of need.

Some of the best employees often fail to communicate their ambition to the people more senior than them. Your line manager needs to know about your aspirations in order to give you the opportunity to display your potential. If you are open about your personal goals you are more likely to be set up for success. Create a context that allows you to go beyond the boundaries of your current position. Beyond the darkness, this crisis offers an opportunity to shine.

In conclusion

Despite the obvious benefits Monaco possesses, employers based here should not be complacent during this crisis. Top talent is more mobile than ever and base their decisions on an ever-increasing multitude of factors. It would be a mistake to overlook any outlined in this article. Remember, the cost of a high turnover of the best employees exceeds the cost of investing in them.

Employees: be open with your managers. You’ll be surprised about how much they can help you grow.

 

Related stories:

Starting a business during the Covid-19 crisis

 

Top photo: Pixabay

 

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