“People are your greatest asset.”
In my brief experience of running a small business startup experiment, “people,” the employee has been the toughest challenge to operations. The employee has confounded me. Thus far the employees I have encountered have been, great at the job but limited in availability; or weak at the job and always available; or excellent at the job but slow to complete tasks; good at the job but lacks people skills and the combination continues on and on.
The experience of hiring alone has truly driven home the understanding that when you get that employee that fits your organization you do everything you can to keep them. To that end, talent, drive, and ambition are abundant, but finding the individual with the expertise, drive, and ambition to work for you, that want the job at your organization is a difficult challenge indeed.
According to the 2018 Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, Summit report, 70% of small businesses struggle to find and retain skilled talent.
At 70 percent, this issue is nearly a pandemic among small businesses.
In fact, according to the Summit (the largest gathering of U.S. small business owners), recruiting was the top barrier preventing small businesses from growing more quickly.
Without the right employees, it’s hard for small businesses to grow and thrive.
So, what’s a small business to do?
The good news is that there are many ways to attract and retain high-level talent. You may have to play outside of the traditional benefits sandbox.
Let’s take a look at five proven ways your small business can recruit and retain top talent.
- Offer a flexible work environment and schedule.
- Provide opportunities for advancement that align with your employees’ strengths and values.
- Create a positive work culture that fosters a tight-knit team of passionate employees.
- Respect and care for your employees as the humans that they are.
- Crowdsource when it makes sense to do so instead of hiring directly.
In reading the list of five they read like a no-brainer, but none of the “proven ways” to recruit and retain top talent are easy to achieve or align and will vary based on your business. They are, however, a positive start in the right direction and thus far have served the experiment well. Therefore business and experiment continue to move forward.