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10 Employee Retention, Engagement, and Careers


Turnover-the rate at which employees leave the firm
Voluntary turnover
Involuntary separations (due to poor performance, disability or corporate downsizing)
Involuntary turnover

1. Costs of Turnover
2. Managing Voluntary Turnover
5 top reasons high commitment/top performing employees leave:
1. Pay
2. Promotional opportunities
3. Work-life balance
4. Career development
5. Health care benefits
6. Unfairness
7. Not having their voices heard
8. Lack of recognition
3. Retention Strategies for Reducing Voluntary Turnover
*retaining employees is a talent management issue
* Employers can only address such issues by instituting effective and comprehensive
talent management (recruitment, selection, training, appraisal, and compensation)
*Put another way, turnovers (both voluntary and involuntary) often start with poor
selection decisions, compounded by inadequate training, insensitive appraisals, and
inequitable pay.
Identifying the issues-first step in any retention strategy

a. A Comprehensive Approach to Retaining Employees

1. Selection-choosing the right worker and supervisors
2. Professional growth
- professionals who feel their company cares about their development and
progress are much more likely to stay.
3. Provide career direction
-dont wait until performance reviews to remind top employees how valuable
they are to your company
4. Meaningful work and ownership of goals
-People cant do their jobs if they dont know what to do or what their goals
-making it clear what your expectations are regarding their performance and
what their responsibilities are
5. Recognition and reward
6. Culture and Environment
7. Promote work-life balance
8. Acknowledge achievements
a. Managing Involuntary Turnover
- dismissals due to poor performance are sometimes avoidable. As
b. Talent Management and Employee Retention
c. Job Withdrawal
Withdrawal-separating oneself from ones current situation; a means of escape for
someone who is dissatisfied or fearful
Job Withdrawal-actions intended to place physical or psychological distance
between employees and their work environments
-ex. Poor attendance, voluntary turnover, taking undeserved work breaks, spending
time in idle conversation and neglecting aspects of the job one is obligated to
perform. 15 Other employees stop showing up mentally ( psychological withdrawal )
* job withdrawal process tends to be incremental, often evolving from
daydreaming to absences to quitting: [W]hen an employee perceives that temporary
withdrawal will not resolve his/her problems, then the employee is apt to choose a
more permanent form of withdrawal (i.e., turnover, assuming that alternative work
opportunities are available). 17
*negative emotional states make people aware that their current situation is
problematic, and this awareness motivates them to take action.
*People are repelled by situations that produce unpleasant, uncomfortable , and are
attracted to those that produce pleasant, comfortable ones
Potential negatives
-boring jobs, poor supervision, low pay, bullying, lack of career prospects, and poor
working conditions.
Potential positives
- job enrichment, supportive supervision, equitable pay/family-friendly benefits,
disciplinary/appeals processes, career development opportunities,

Diminished employee engagement is reflected in:
o Poor attendance
o Voluntary turnover
o Psychological withdrawal
Engagement-being psychologically involved in, connected to, and committed
to getting ones jobs done

1. Why Engagement is Important

-satisfied employees arent enough
- Instead, Employees should be engaged by providing them with reasons and
methods to satisfy customers and then rewarded for appropriate behavior
2. Actions That Foster Engagement
Engagement-supporting actions include making sure employees:
1. Understand how their departments contribute to the companys
2. See how their own efforts contribute to achieving the companys goals
3. Get a sense of accomplishment from working at the firm
3. Monitoring Employee Engagement

*Rather than focusing on incentives and perks to entice and retain employees,
organizations will hold onto the most talented workers by offering them a range of
professional experiences, broad functional and geographic exposure within the
organization, and more targeted leadership opportunities
* employees should be better equipped, boost employee engagement, recruitment
and retention efforts
1. Careers Terminology
Career -occupational positions a person holds over the years
Career management-process for enabling employees to better understand
and develop their career skills and interests and to use these skills and
interests most effectively both within the company and after they leave the
Career development-lifelong series of activities (such as workshops) that
contribute to a persons career exploration, establishment success, and
Career planning-the deliberate process through which someone becomes
aware of personal skills, interests, knowledge, motivations, and other
characteristics; acquires information about opportunities and choices;
identifies career-related goals; and establishes action plans to attain specific
2. Career Today
2. Psychological Contract
Psychological contract-what the employer and employee expect of each other
-an unwritten agreement that exists between employers and employees;
identifies each partys mutual expectations
4. The Employees Role in Career Management
Career Planning-matching individual strengths and weaknesses with
occupational opportunities and threats
* Personality is one career choice determinant.
*John Holland found six basic personality types or orientations.
o Self-Directed Search (SDS) test
5. The Employers Role in Career Management
1. Before hiring
- realistic job interviews can help prospective employees more accurately gauge
whether the job is a good fit with the candidate s skills and interests.
2. The first job- building confidence and a more realistic picture of what he or she
can and cannot do
Reality shock-a phenomenon that occurs when a new employees high
expectations and enthusiasm confront the reality of boring, unchallenging job
3. On the job
- Career-oriented appraisals in which the manager is trained not just to appraise
the employee but also to match the person s strengths and weaknesses with a
feasible career path and required development work
6. Career Management Systems
Career development training
Follow-up support
Career assessment
Planning tools
-planned learning events in which participants are expected to be actively
involved, completing career planning exercises and inventories and participating
in career skills practice sessions; typically includes self-assessment exercises,
assessment of occupation trends and goal-setting and action planning segments
- Career coaches generally help employees create 1- to 5-year plans showing
their careers with the firm may lead.
Performance review
Performance appraisal
7. Gender Issues in Career Development
Corporate career development activities were less available to women that
tom men
Glass ceiling
7. The Managers Role
-orientation and training
-schedule regular performance appraisals
-informal career development plan


Coaching-educating, instructing, and training subordinates; focuses on teaching
shorter-term job-related skills
Mentoring-advising, counseling, and guiding; focuses on helping employees
navigated longer-term career hazards
* But with more managers leading highly trained employees and self-managing
teams, supporting, coaching, and mentoring are fast replacing formal authority and
giving orders for getting things done.
1. Building Your Coaching Skills
o analysis
o interpersonal skills
o Four-Step Process of Coaching
1. Preparation- means understanding the problem, the employee,
and the employee s skills
2. Planning- to obtain his or her enthusiastic agreement on what
change is required.
3. Active/actual coaching- effective coach offers ideas and advice in
such a way that the subordinate can hear them, respond to them, and
appreciate their value.
4. Follow-up- re-observe the person s progress periodically.
i. Planning
Change of plans in the form of
1. Steps to take
2. Measures of success
3. Date to complete
ii. Actual coaching-teacher
iii. An effective coach offers ideas and advice in such a way that the subordinate
can hear them, respond to them, and appreciate their value
iv. Follow-up and re-observe the persons progress periodically
Building Your Mentoring Skills
-Formal or informal
1. Coaching focuses on the daily tasks that you can easily re-learn, so
coachings downside is usually limited
Mentoring-focusing on relatively hard-to-reverse longer-term issues, and often
touches on the persons psychology (motives, needs, aptitudes, and how one gets
along with others, for instance)
1. Set high standards
2. Invest the time
3. Steer protgs
4. Requires trust which reflects the mentors professional
competence, consistency, ability to communicate and readiness
to share control
1. Choose an appropriate potential mentor
2. Dont be surprised if youre turned down
3. Make it easier for a potential mentor to agree to your request
4. Respect the mentors time
Improving Productivity through HRIS: Integrating Talent Management and
Career and Succession Planning
1. 360 Feedback
2. Career Development
3. Compensation Management
4. Career Progression
5. Learning Management
6. Performance Management
7. Recruiting and Hiring


*Career planning and mentoring often precede promotion decisions. Most
1. Decision 1: Is Seniority or Competence the Rule?
o Favors competence
2. Decision 2: How Should We Measure Competence?
-Peter Principle
-promote competent employees up to their level of incompetence
-defining and measuring past performance is relatively straightforward
-written knowledge test, an assessment center, credit for seniority, and a
score based on recent performance appraisal ratings, personnel records
review (includes evaluation of job-related influences such as supervisory-
related education and experience, ratings from multiple sources, and
systematic evaluation of behavioral evidence
-THE 9-BOX ASSESSMENT-current performance and performance potential
-9-box matrix-assessing current employees promotional prospects;
1. displays three levels of current job performance (exceptional, fully
performing, not yet fully performing) across the top
2. shows three levels of likely potential (eligible for promotion, room for
growth in current position, not likely to grow beyond current position)
down the side
3. Decision 3: Is the Process Formal or Informal?
- own unpublished criteria to make decisions.
- a formal promotion policy-describing the criteria by which the firm awards
- job posting policy-states the firm will post open positions and their
requirements, and circulate these to all employees. As
4. Decision 4: Vertical, Horizontal or Other?
Sources of Bias Promotion Decisions
Promotions and the Law
1. retaliation
2. inconsistent, unsystematic processes to decide who to promote
Managing Transfers
Transfer- a move from one job to another, usually with no change in salary or grade.
- may transfer a worker to vacate a position where he or she is no longer needed, to fill one
where he or she is needed
-for some personal growth, personal enrichment, more interesting jobs, greater convenience