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7 Ways to Cultivate and Retain Your Top Talent

Your direct reports will one day take over the workforce. It might be a long way off, but it’s still inevitable. So, what are you doing today to invest in them and make sure they carry on the hardworking legacy you’ve worked hard to build? To make sure they keep the company on a trajectory of growth?

Here are seven ways you can invest in your employees to retain them for as long as you can and cultivate their talent to someday lead their own teams and companies.


Create a culture of respect. We’re sure you’d rather have a team that feels comfortable coming to you with issues rather than a team that fears your reaction. Right? It’s important to create a safe space where employees feel comfortable coming to you with their challenges and successes. Your tone, nonverbal communication, and choice of words have great impact on how your employees feel when they come to you. And your willingness to ask their opinion, listen openly, bring them in on organizational changes that affect them, and trust them with meaningful assignments shows you believe in them.

Appreciate their unique gifts and talents. It’s important to let employees be themselves in their leadership, rather than creating a second version of you. You have a powerhouse at your fingertips, and recognizing the unique contributions they make to your organization as a whole is a great way to retain your top talent. 

Invest in them one-on-one. Be a leader who propels your employees toward success. One of the easiest and most effective ways to invest in your employees is to spend time with them. By scheduling regular one-on-one meetings with your team members, you create space to discuss their current projects, challenges, and new ideas. During this time, you can offer advice, give encouragement, answer questions, and provide redirection if needed. To better their growth and development, it’s important during these times to share both positive feedback and areas of opportunity.

Give them exposure to different parts of the company. Increased exposure to different facets of your organization will help employees gain understanding of its systems and processes. As a leader, they’ll need to understand not just their own job description and department, but how other positions and departments function. One way to do this is to arrange for employees to shadow each other or individuals from different departments. Or maybe you invite an employee to a meeting they haven’t attended before.

Set professional goals. Setting professional goals helps provide direction and vision in one’s career. It’s a good idea to sit down with your employees and identify their short-term and long-term goals. Do they want to earn an industry-specific certification this year? Would they like to work their way up the corporate ladder to eventually become a CEO? Identify those goals so you can take advantage of opportunities that arise along the way.

Recognize, recognize, recognize! Recognition should show up throughout the employee experience—small wins, big wins, and everything in between. Recognition shows that you’ve been paying attention and are invested in their growth. In turn, your investment will foster continued hard work. Sometimes it may just be a quick “thank you” for a job well done or a fun little gift or certificate for achieving a short-term goal. But bigger achievements and outstanding service milestones call for a more robust award. There’s a time and a place for both.

Take advantage of RecogNation’s solutions. Our revolutionary system of targeted recognition solutions can help you cultivate and retain your top talent, covering the employee journey from onboarding to retirement. Or, as we like to say, from “hi” all the way to “bye.” We have the products, services, and industry experts to help you! Click here to request a demo, or call us at 888.919.7600.