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As an employee retention speaker and employee retention trainer, I regularly counsel supervisors that one of the most important things that a supervisor can do is to get to know their employees.  This should go beyond just small talk which is important but should get to some of the core things that bother people or things that they like that their supervisor does.  In essence, what makes them tick and what ticks them off.  Knowing your employees is critical when it comes to employee retention.  What makes this so difficult it that despite certain generational stereotypes, every employee is different and has different needs and desires.

Knowing what makes people tick gives a supervisor the ability to act in a manner that encourages employees specifically to their needs.  By doing so, a supervisor will be tailoring his efforts towards retaining that person.  Doing the things that motivate someone encourages them to remain with the organization.  If this is combined with other over arching organizational efforts to retain people, you have a powerful combination.  The other side beyond employee retention is that you will have an employee that is probably more engaged and contributing more to the success of the organization.  What more could you ask for?

Understanding what ticks people off is the other side of the equation that is also important.  By avoiding doing those things that tick a person off, you avoid creating MOHIs (Moments of High Influence).  Those moments are moments that so anger a person that they get motivated to do something about it.  That motivation often results in an employee going home, starting up their computer and looking for a new job.  In this day and age, a person may simply turn on their smart phone and start looking or pull into the competitor down the street who has a “now hiring” sign outside their building.  Once someone mentally crosses that threshold and starts looking, this employee retention author knows, it is only a matter of time before they have a new job.

There is no reason whatsoever that you would not want to know what makes your people tick and what ticks them off.  My challenge to the readers of this article is…get out of your office…talk to your people…get to know them and find out what makes them tick and what ticks them off.