Author Topic: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?  (Read 3288 times)

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oceanus

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Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« on: January 27, 2013, 06:23:03 PM »
(I didn't put this in "All in a Day's Work" because it's not an etiquette issue.)

I periodically conduct some personal business with a company that employs a small staff (less than 10 people).  I go into the office maybe once or twice a year, and I’ve chatted and gotten to kind of know some of the people.   I found out that ALL of them have worked there for over 15 years (several over 20 years and a couple 25+ years).  It’s not a fancy place, actually quite low-key and average.  Only a couple private offices and a tiny break room.  Most staff sit among each other – no cubicles.

They mentioned that one woman left a year ago after 23 years, but only because her husband retired and they wanted to move to another state to be closer to family.

I think this is rather unusual – maybe because in the past I worked at a few places with high turnover.

So, I’m thinking that some (maybe all) of the following apply to that office:
1) They are very highly paid
2) The benefit package is superior
3) The people like each other (and the boss/owner) – a lot
4) They really love what they do

The work is not easy - actually they all seem busy and the field (commercial real estate) can be quite competitive.  The boss must also be good at picking people who blend well and are not HR headaches.

Am I missing anything – what do you folks tnink?

« Last Edit: January 27, 2013, 06:24:48 PM by oceanus »

Sharnita

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2013, 06:28:42 PM »
They feel respected in the workplace.
They feel safe in the workplace.

oceanus

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2013, 06:35:29 PM »
By the way, the company has been in business and very successful for over 80 years.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2013, 06:54:52 PM by oceanus »

JenJay

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2013, 06:41:49 PM »
They feel respected in the workplace.
They feel safe in the workplace.

That'd be my guess, too.

At my last job the work was dirty and sometimes difficult, the pay was low, benefits not great, hours not ideal and frequently hard to come by and the boss was a big micromanager. I could have dealt with all of it but upper management treated us like we should be thanking them that we even had a crappy job and that is why most people left, myself included. Being treated like you're valued goes a long way!

Slartibartfast

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2013, 07:42:10 PM »
The only other factor I can think of for companies like this (not necessarily this one specifically) would be "They're all related to each other"  ;)

Hmmmmm

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2013, 09:03:47 PM »
Staying with a positive perspective, they all feel appreciated (financially and emotionally) and respected. 

From a negative perspective, they are in a specialized industry and in an area with limited opportunities.


Bijou

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2013, 09:11:56 PM »
It sounds like the morale in that workplace is high.  I think respect between the owner and the employees and among the employees themselves may play a part in this. 
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MorgnsGrl

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2013, 09:22:50 PM »
I just wanted to say that reading this gave me an unexpected happy. My dad ran a hardware store for 25 years (following his own father running it before that) and had a number of long-term employees that were my family's friends as I grew up. Their children were my childhood friends. I am still in touch with one of the employees today, although my dad has been dead for ten years and the store closed nearly as long. The thought that my dad helped create an environment where the employees felt valued and safe and well-compensated is really great.

yokozbornak

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2013, 09:32:28 PM »
My DH works for a fairly large company (1000+ employees), and I am amazed at the low amount of turnover that they have.  Right now, they have had some turnover because of people retiring after being there for 20+ years, but people rarely quit for another job.

Here are somethings I've noticed.  First, they are privately owned so they don't have to answer shareholders.  Profits are reinvested in the company and shared with employees.  They also have a wonderful benefits package including a pension plan (almost unheard of nowadays).  The pay is very good although not the highest around, but the benefits definitely make up for that.  They really are generous.  DH was involved in developing a project this past year.  One day, he was called into a high level manager's office and handed a nice bonus check and told that they just wanted to say thank-you for his hard work on the project.  They also always give a large Christmas bonus and a yearly bonus each year.

I have noticed that people who work there really have a vision for what they are doing.  I know my DH really feels like his work will have a positive impact on other people, and I think most people who work there feel the same way.  I think they really foster a sense of purpose.

It's not perfect, but he loves being there.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2013, 09:35:50 PM by yokozbornak »

Sophia

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2013, 10:00:26 PM »
There is extremely low turnover where I work.  Well, among those that last more than a few months.  I think a big part is that it is run by good, smart, hard-working people who don't mess up or do things halfway. 

For example, I've always hated company parties.  I love this companies Christmas party (held in Jan because December is really busy for us).  Was at a family-style restaurant and they chose the good stuff, and good wine at the open bar. 

One of the higher-ups got a large box of fruit from a customer.  He left it in the break room.  It was a hit.  Now we always have good fruit in the break room.   

An official company poster in one of the conference rooms looks like a typical feel-good poster.  It says "Meetings:  No one is dumb as all of us."

kareng57

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2013, 11:00:16 PM »
There is extremely low turnover where I work.  Well, among those that last more than a few months.  I think a big part is that it is run by good, smart, hard-working people who don't mess up or do things halfway. 

For example, I've always hated company parties.  I love this companies Christmas party (held in Jan because December is really busy for us).  Was at a family-style restaurant and they chose the good stuff, and good wine at the open bar. 

One of the higher-ups got a large box of fruit from a customer.  He left it in the break room.  It was a hit.  Now we always have good fruit in the break room.   

An official company poster in one of the conference rooms looks like a typical feel-good poster.  It says "Meetings:  No one is dumb as all of us."


It sounds like www.despair.com.   Even for a friendly, well-managed workplace - their posters/tools are absolutely hilarious.  I used to keep the "tradition" poster in a frame on my (physical) desk top.

cicero

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2013, 03:24:04 AM »
I can say about my current job (non profit org) - the pay isn't great, we work really hard, there is no money for anything but:
our boss respects us and has our back and he works 1000 times harder than anyone. there is little to no gossiping and there is no back stabbing. there is a degree of turnover but that is because there is little room to move ahead. and the people who work here are all great (the not-so-great are either down sized or encouraged to find other jobs).

my previous job (also non profit) - was horrible. same low pay, same hard work but there was a lot of (boss-sanctioned and encouraged) back stabbing and gossip. people stay there forever because it is a small, specialized area of expertise and there are not many jobs in the field.

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Ceallach

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2013, 05:32:03 AM »
Honesty, trust and fairness lead to loyalty.  Good benefits / salaries help too but it's usually working conditions eg how happy they feel going to work each day that really makes a difference.
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Geekychick1984

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2013, 06:43:37 AM »
The company I've been with for the last 2 1/2 years is like that.  It's actually a larger company (over a 1,000 employees), but the pay and benefits are good, it's an open door environment, people treat each other with respect, and they understand stuff happens with regards to personal illnesses/emergencies.  I've never been given a guilt trip for being out sick or having to go to the doctor.  In fact, I broke my ankle last year, and they let me work from home for two months, which kept me from going insane.

Just Lori

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Re: Low (or no) turnover - what's their secret?
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2013, 07:17:44 AM »
I think it's helpful to have an honest management team.  Employees aren't stupid; they can tell when their boss is spinning a tale or trying to hide something.  They also want their concerns to be taken seriously, even if the outcome isn't what they actually want.

When I was out of college, I worked for a company in Florida.  The pay was ridiculously low, and the big boss (who drove a luxury car and lived in a nice home) would tell us, "You're being paid in sunshine."  Well, the landlord didn't accept payment in the form of sunshine, you know?  My immediate supervisor, though, fought for every penny in a raise and told us look, this was never going to be a high paying job, but use it for the experience and enjoy the location and move on when it was time.  I imagine a lot of people stuck around longer than expected because they were treated like intelligent adults by their direct supervisor.