The best way to find out what your employees want and how to retain them is to ask them. Ask questions to gauge how you’re meeting your employees’ expectations. Not just “How’s it going?”, but specific questions to get specific answers. Explore why these people remain with your company.
- Why did they join the organization?
- How well are their objectives or dreams being fulfilled?
- Which aspects of their work do they enjoy the most?
- Which do they least enjoy
- Are they receiving sufficient opportunities for growth and development?
- What would influence them to look elsewhere
The stay interview is a one-on-one interview between a manager and a valued employee. Its aim, quite simply, is to learn what makes employees want to keep working for you. Likewise, it's designed to elicit what might motivate them to leave. In an effective 30-minute stay interview, managers ask standard, structured questions in a casual and conversational manner. It’s not a performance discussion but rather a “let me get to know you and your goals” discussion.
The stay interview is an opportunity to build trust with employees and a chance to assess the degree of employee satisfaction and engagement that exists in a department or company. Stay interviews are preferable to employee satisfaction surveys because they:
- Provide a two-way conversation and a chance to ask questions
- Get a more in-depth understanding of that employee’s current motivation
- Offer managers the opportunity to quickly reinforce the positives and deal with the employee’s concerns