Believe it or not, your employees want to be engaged in their work

Posted On October 24, 2013

As much as it is maligned, the whole concept of “go out and find a job that makes you happy” may not be such a bad thing after all.  Yes, it is possible that seeking happiness may make a person perpetually dissatisfied, as if there is always likely to be something better around the next bend.  However, there are layers of happiness that can come with simple things, such as career accomplishments.  And it seems this is where some companies are missing the boat.

In a recent Workplace Insights study by Accounting Principals, hiring managers shared that while they know more employees leave to pursue professional development opportunities (26 percent) as they do salary increases (21 percent), they are more willing to negotiate salary (39 percent) than to discuss career development (14 percent).  And yet 25 percent are kept up at night thinking about recruitment.

On the surface, the logic seems awfully clear:

  • Employees value career development ahead of salary and are willing to leave to learn.
  • Recruiting is a pain point for companies and is more expensive than retaining good employees.
  • Clear career development programs could increase engagement and retention, thereby minimizing recruitment needs.

And yet the go-to negotiation is salary. That’s the old way. Today’s workers want to be engaged.  They want to feel empowered.  And they want to grow – all of this can be used to your advantage as a business owner or manager.  Spend the time to understand what your employees want to learn and how they see their careers advancing.  Then make sure the mechanism exists to help them achieve that goal. The result will be interested, engaged and better-skilled employees who are creating the jobs that make them happy.

Categories: Generations, Workplace