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Staff Retention and Why It’s Keeping You Up at Night

13 Apr 16:00 By Vicki-Anne Craigen

Staff Retention Vicki-Anne Craigen

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When speaking with business owners there’s one thing I can pretty much bank on hearing every time. It usually goes something like this “If I knew in the beginning how hard it was to keep staff, I may never have gone into business”. Sound familiar? Who would have thought that getting the business was the easy part, and that getting people to deliver your promised product or service was going to be one of the key reasons you toss and turn every night! Staff retention is so important to any business, and the last thing you want is to lose your most valuable employees over fixable problems - would you ever have thought that you’d lose the knowledge, the internal machinations that gave your business the edge, to the very person you groomed to be your next leader? Ouch!

Running your own business has so many layers of complexity that it’s enough to send your hair grey – and it usually does! But I’m hoping you’re glad you do, because the world needs entrepreneurs just like you and people need the jobs your vision can supply. So hang in there and put the energy you put into worrying or whingeing about the problem to better use; implementing a solution to your staff retention woes.

Yes, sometimes this is easier said than done. Mostly, in my experience though, when the ‘want’ is strong enough, the implementation of the solution is both exciting and empowering. The positive results give your business the (sometimes long overdue!) kick in the butt it needed, and you and your team will have a renewed excitement about going to the office each day. Can you imagine?

So where do you start?

1. Firstly, you need to have a good, long and hard look at yourself and your leadership team.

Accept that you might be the problem and do something about it. “A fish rots from the head down” - just saying…This may be painful, but the number one reason people leave a business is because of the person they report to.

2. Start with an anonymous staff engagement survey to get the dirt on everything and anything.

It needs to include questions that encompass everything from the coffee supplied, the technology supplied, questions around the tone of conversations, leadership styles, questions about office temperature, to business demands and workload. In my opinion, stay away from rating systems and always ask for solutions to their gripes. This tends to weed out those who just like to complain.

3.  Put your leadership team on notice that you won’t tolerate negative feedback about their management style.

Let them know that each person who leaves will be asked to complete an exit document so you’ll get the warts and all story on their decision to resign. If your leaders are to blame, they’ll be accountable. This may mean investing in training for your leadership team, but every dollar spent is one less you need to recoup when things go pear shaped.

I can hear you saying this all sounds great, but you simply don’t have the time to work on your staff retention strategy when your business has so many other demands. I hear you! This is where Creative Recruiters can help you. Staff retention isn’t a term often thrown around by recruiters but this is where we excel; this is what our business is about. Sourcing your staff and working with you to help them stick for the long term is what we’re passionate about. Sure it’s a challenge, but we’re up for it. You can learn more about the recruitment and retention services we offer by visiting our website

In the meantime, sit down with your team and ask them how they’re doing.  Really listen to them. Show them that you’re serious about investing in them for the long term by taking action and implementing their ideas on how to create a better workplace. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results.

Have a great day!



Director – Creative Recruiters

m: +61 413 453 563


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