If you have any kind of business, but particularly a smaller one, you know you want to keep your employees. This is particularly true in the hospitality industry, where options for employee retention are critical because employee retention is one of the lowest of any industry. What are the best options for employee retention, and how can they be achieved?
Options for Employee Retention: Leadership
Employees follow someone who shows good leadership, which is the ability to inspire with a vision, bring people together with a collective identity, reinforce shared values, and give an expression of confidence and optimism no matter what happens. A good leader does not do tasks personally: he or she maintains those who are completing tasks.
A good manager inspires employees, leading them to provide great customer service and improving client loyalty. Hiring the right managers for your hotel or property is obviously key, but managers can be improved, as well. There are many programs available that can help with leadership skills, and investing in the leadership development of your upper-level staff is a great way not only to retain their services but also to inspire them to create an atmosphere all other employees will love, too.
Options for Employee Retention: Motivations
Employees need to be recruited, hired, and properly compensated. Everyone is aware of that, but the job does not stop with cutting a monthly paycheck. It costs a lot to find and train a new employee in the hospitality industry, and while they are still in training overall service quality suffers. Retaining employees has a lot to do with understanding their needs and motivating them. Humans have needs that begin with the physiological and safety needs: water, food, shelter, money. But once these are satisfied, Maslow’s hierarchy of need explains that belonging, self-esteem, and self-actualization become increasingly important.
Meeting those secondary needs will help ensure employees are satisfied and willing to remain. This means creating a work culture where people interact and feel as if they belong, while also providing ways for employees to grow and move forward. Growing is not just a matter of getting promotions or earning more money. It can be as simple as finding ways to promote a person’s efficiency, and making sure that positive customer comments come back to boost self-esteem. Having a good hotel management software system in place is one way of setting up and integrating systems and practices that will promote employee growth.
Options for Employee Retention: Strategies
Successful employee retention has to be planned, not just stumbled into. It requires management and ownership that are committed to making employees feel valued and who can see the value in keeping the knowledge and skills of current employees. Of course, that very knowledge is one of the issues working with a manager, for a skilled hospitality worker has a transferable skill that can easily be poached by a competitor. Finding ways to give employees a personal and real stake in the company increases the chance they will not lure away.
Creating an employee-centered environment also goes a long way to ensuring retention. Any time that an organization’s culture is driven, at least in part, by what suits the employees, the employees remain much longer. Another key is
equating performance on the job to outcomes. While employees should be valued as persons and be encouraged, they should also be getting compensation and recognition that is line with what they are producing, and which is seen as fair and predictable. This is where hospitality management software systems again come into play, as they allow you to set up such fair and predictable systems, and keep to them.
Any business leader needs to see employee retention as an important problem, and hotel leaders in particular. The amount of money and time it takes to find and train a new employee, and the loss of knowledge and skills every time an existing one leaves, is a net loss. Find the right leaders, develop the right culture, implement the right hotel software, and you’ll go a long way towards keeping the best of the best.