Employee retention is one of the most critical responsibilities an employer has in order to ensure the best possible products and services are provided to their customers. Leadership in times of fiscal challenges will always prevail.
How many of you have worked for someone you would be willing to serve free of charge? You would serve them because their leadership and mentoring led and inspired you to be better than what you are…you would go to hell and back for them!
It is rare if ever that an employee terminates employment because of a logo or slogan! They leave for reasons that are linked directly to poor leadership decisions or the lack of leadership all together.
Losing a great employee is a terrible thing. There's the expense of finding, onboarding, and training a replacement. There's the uncertainty of how a new employee will work out. There's the hardship on the rest of your staff until the position can be filled. Sometimes there's a solid reason--the person was a bad fit for the team, or moved away for personal reasons, or was offered an opportunity too great to pass up. In those cases, even if it's a difficult transition, it feels fundamentally right.
But what about the rest?
Keeping your best employees starts with understanding why people leave. Here are seven of the top reasons:
People don't want to think they're locked into a groove and will come to the same place and do the same thing every day for the next 20 or 40 years. People want to feel that they're still moving forward and growing in their professional life. They want to have something to aspire to. If there's no career ladder or structure for advancement, they know they'll need to seek it somewhere else. In the meantime, they're far more likely to be bored, unhappy, and resentful--things that effect performance and the entire team's morale.
Some periods of stress and feeling overwhelmed come with most jobs, but nothing burns out great employees faster than overwork. And often it's the best employees--the most capable and committed, your most trusted--you overload the most. If they find themselves constantly taking on more and more, especially in the absence of recognition such as promotions and raises, they come to feel they're being taken advantage of. And who could blame them? You'd feel the same.
3. Vague visions
There's nothing more frustrating than a workplace filled with visions and big dreams, but no translation of those aspirations into the strategic goals that make them achievable. Without that connection, it's all just talk. What talented person wants to spend his or her time and energy in support of something undefined? People like to know that they're working to create something, not just spinning their wheels.
4. Profits over people
When an organization values its bottom line more than its people, the best people go elsewhere, leaving behind those who are too mediocre or apathetic to find a better position. The result is a culture of underperformance, low morale, and even disciplinary issues. Of course, things like profit, output, pleasing stakeholders, and productivity are important--but success ultimately depends on the people who do the work.
5. Lack of recognition
Even the most selfless people want to be recognized and rewarded for a job well done. It is part of who we are as human beings. When you fail to recognize employees, you're not only failing to motivate them but also missing out on the most effective way to reinforce great performance. Even if you don't have the budget for raises or bonuses, there are lots of low-cost ways to provide recognition--and a word of appreciation is free. People won't care if they don't feel noticed.
6. Lack of trust
Your employees have a vantage point for viewing your behavior and weigh it against your commitments. If they see you dealing unethically with vendors, lying to stakeholders, cheating clients, or failing to keep your word, the best and most principled of them will leave. The rest, even worse, will stay behind and follow your lead.
7. Excessive hierarchy
Every workplace needs structure and leadership, but a rigidly top-down organization makes for unhappy employees. If your best performers know they're expected to produce without contributing their ideas, if they're not empowered to make decisions, if they're constantly having to defer to others on the basis of their title rather than their expertise, they don't have much to be happy about.
Ultimately, many people who leave their job do so because of the boss, not the work or the organization. Ask yourself what you may be doing to drive your best people away, and start making the changes needed to keep them.
Effective leadership equals effective recruitment and retention. Every great organization has great core values that are made more effective by those that represent them in their daily contacts with others. The U. S. Coast Guard: Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty; U. S. Marine Corps: Honor, Courage, Commitment; Alaska State Troopers: Loyalty, Integrity, Courage. They are simple, but yet profound in their ability to summarize the expectations of professional and dedicated service to others.
To be an effective leader, don’t just recite your core values…LIVE THEM!
-Aegis of Alaska
If you have been employed or know someone that is employed with the State of Alaska, then you have probably heard about the “Tier” retirement systems. There are currently 4 Tiers:
Tier I 1/1/1961 – 6/30/1986
Tier II Entered after 6/30/1986
Tier III Entered after 6/30/1996
Tier IV Entered after 6/30/2006
Now this article is discussing what you need to know if you are injured on the job resulting in your inability to return to work. In this example, you are a Fireman, Trooper, Police Officer, Deputy Fire Marshal, Court Services Officer, etc.
So you respond to an emergency, like every hero before you. You find yourself in a life or death situation and ultimately suffer an injury that prohibits you from returning to work in your public safety profession. You go through the processes with the State of Alaska’s Department of Retirement and Benefits, applying for your retirement benefits now that you have become disabled:
If you are Tier I, II, or III: receive 40% of your highest 3 years of pay, plus 10% COLA (cost of living allowance), and medical coverage until you reach 20 years of service time or retirement eligibility age (whichever comes first). At this point you are converted to your Tier Retirement Plan and receive those benefits.
If you are Tier IV: receive 40% of your highest 3 years of pay until you reach 20 years of service time or retirement eligibility age (whichever comes first). At this time converted to your Tier Retirement Plan. You will notice some key differences/absences of benefits, i.e. NO COLA / NO MEDICAL COVERAGE. Now here is the real stinger…this injury occurred at the beginning of your career. You have only accumulated a couple of thousand dollars in your 401K model retirement account. At the 20 years or retirement age, you are converted to your Tier IV retirement…which means disbursements from this 401K model account that you have not contributed to since your date of injury and worker’s compensation eligibility. You are now living on whatever was in that account with no medical benefits. If you need benefits for you and your qualified dependents, which you undoubtedly will, you will need to apply for social assistance/Medicaid, etc.
Not exactly the reward a hero should receive for selfless/noble service to others. So what can you do now? Leave the State of Alaska for another employer that offers defined benefits? Or perhaps fight for better benefits by holding lawmakers to task with your vote!
If you or a family member currently find yourself in this situation, perhaps retaining a competent and knowledgeable attorney is the more responsible and effective thing to do.
The choice is ultimately yours. Feel free to contact us at www.aegisofalaska.com for more tips and information, or referral to a licensed legal professional.
Thank you for your service! If you are a family member, friend or acquaintance, thank you for supporting those that serve with honor and commitment.
Identity Theft is a crime in which the perpetrator uses another individual's personally identifying information to open a fraudulent credit card account or commit other illegal acts under someone else's identity. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), this is the fastest growing white-collar crime in the U.S. with over 27 million Americans as victims (back in 2005, so this number has undoubtedly grown). At the time of the 2005 report, the primary means of theft were:
Now it’s posing as customer service representatives on legitimate Facebook business sites. Example: You go to your credit card company’s Facebook page to roast them about a poor customer service experience. Suddenly you receive a message on messenger from what appears to be a user tagged as "customer service.” After a few messages, they request your personal account information to “address this complaint, and make things right.” Some even go as far as providing you a link to an online complaint form. Unfortunately you follow up with a phone call to your card carrier sometime later, maybe after seeing a questionable purchase on your account…it’s too late!
Another disturbing criminal tactic, is romancing members of the single/lonely elderly community. You’ve heard the stories, grandpa just died, grandma hasn’t been alone for decades. She’s lonely. She posts on her Facebook page or other social media about her devastating loss. Or she enrolls in an elders dating site (you’ve seen the commercials). One day she is smitten by some “knight in shining armor” that has befriended her and says all the romantic things she’s missed hearing. Grandma never actually meets this person face to face. They make excuses (a popular one is, “I work on the Slope and can’t be reached.” One day this “Romeo” tugs on her heart strings and requests a credit card or bank account to bail them out of a dire situation, or needs funds to finally come unite with her…unfortunately at this point it’s too late…she’s been “catfished”!!!!!
If you have been the victim or related to a victim, you need to know that law enforcement is limited in what they can do for these cases. Typically unless there are multiple victims, little or no enforcement action can be taken. This is due to the enormous workload already placed on our law enforcement professionals and the almost impossible task of identifying these thieves, many of them residing in foreign countries.
As a military veteran, this is a whole different story that can be summed up by one issue: In your military career, from basic training to your final duty station, how many times did you have to write down your social security number on every document put before you? As a veteran myself, I couldn’t answer that accurately except to say innumerous times!
The Alaska Department of Law has a fact sheet here, http://www.law.state.ak.us/pdf/press/idtheft-fact-sheet.pdf on what you should do afterwards.
We strongly recommend you take action now to prevent…never just react. Enroll yourself and your love ones in an online identity protection service. Feel free to check out our Recommended Products section for more information.
- Aegis of Alaska