It’s very difficult in today’s market to retain employees – especially where I am in the Seattle area. There are so many companies that will try to lure good employees away by offering money and higher wages. I have found the best way to combat this is to show employees a path of opportunity and empower them to be part of the decision process. It’s hard enough to find good employees so when you do find them you need to work even harder on retention.
It really boils down to people feeling that they are valued. In my company, Nations Roof, I’ve created an environment of inclusion. In the past, for instance, we would have pre-construction meetings prior to starting a new job with just the project manager. Now we invite everyone to be part of the process. The job foreman and lead are there and they invite members of their crews to come to the meeting. The outcome has been fantastic.
Many field laborers have never been to a meeting and have never had any input into the process. By inviting everyone to the planning meeting we get buy-in from all employees. They help set goals for the project and they feel like they are part of the bigger group. They also have the chance to see opportunities that they may never have been exposed to before.
We are also very transparent with the team. We share financials and people are really interested in where the project comes in and whether it was on budget. They also get to enjoy a little competition between the crews for meeting goals.
At Nations Roof we also do a lot of things for the families of employees through our Nations Cares program, offering prescription savings tips and programs and other perks for being part of the Nations family. We also make sure that the messaging reaches the families by sending directly to family members’ email addresses. By focusing on the family as a whole, you are able to help everyone see the opportunities that exist through a career here and you begin to build excitement and hope because everyone can see a path for growth within the company.
Jennifer Stone is the president of Nations Roof, Pacific Northwest. See her full bio here.