Engineer Retention (part 2): Help them love the work

Engineer Retention (part 2): Help them love the work

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Help them love the work

What your employees do every day will impact whether or not they want to stick around your company. Make sure you’re doing everything you can to create a work environment that engineers are happy to participate in. Do engineers feel trusted? Do they have a good work-life balance? Does their manager empower them? Do they feel recognized for their achievements?

The answers to these questions can affect whether employees stick around.

Check-in on employee satisfaction

More than 25% of employees are in a high-retention-risk category. How do you know who's at risk of attrition? Observe and record employee's attitudes in detail or quickly. You need to ask. It might seem simple, but asking your employees how they're doing is a great way to make sure they're happy. Try to gather both quantitative and qualitative data on employee happiness. After all, it's easier to adjust for retention if you have data and information on how employees feel and why they might consider leaving your company.

Don’t micromanage

It can be tempting to track what teams are up to since they aren't in the office. After all, at many companies, working from home has traditionally been equated with playing hooky. But micromanaging is a surefire way to frustrate employees and send them running. Try these strategies to get yourself to trust your managers to run their teams as they see fit.

  • Ask managers how they want to be managed. Confident leaders will seek input from their managers on how they would like to keep their boss up to date. Simply asking, "How often would you like me to check-in?" or "How would you like me to hold you accountable?" will help to establish trust and autonomy, and it will help you learn how to work more effectively with your managers.
  • Adopt a fail-forward attitude. Leaders like yourself tend to be high achievers, and that often comes with a perfectionist streak. Perfectionism is what compels leaders to micromanage in the first place. Allow your team to learn through failure and openly discuss lessons learned.
  • Be a facilitator, not a taskmaster. If you manage expectations instead of tasks, then your managers will know what they need to deliver without being given a laundry list of chores. Let your team know they can come to you with problems or questions and keep your inquiries to a minimum.
  • Trust your team. Sometimes micromanagement is born of trust issues. If you're prone to micromanagement, try giving your teams more responsibility than you're comfortable with. Chances are, you'll be surprised and delighted by how well your teams execute on goals and deliver. Most Engineers in Viet Nam said that they would leave the company if the boss or manager do not trust them.
  • Get your managers to do the same. Encourage your managers to trust their engineers and give them the autonomy to thrive. Management style can significantly impact retention. Give your managers the training and tools they need to empower their engineers.

Recognize the achievements

Everyone wants to feel appreciated at their job, especially top talent Engineers in Viet Nam. It feels great, and it sends a signal that they’re succeeding in their role.

The converse is also true: when employees feel undervalued or unappreciated by their company, they may take it as a sign that it’s not the right place for them and seek greener pastures as a result.

Recognizing your employees is one of the easiest ways to build morale and boost retention.

  • Give public shout-outs. Recognize great work on Slack or via email and consider building an online recognition wall. It’s one of the simplest ways to make your employees feel appreciated.
  • Give employees a way to recognize each other’s achievements. For example, make space for employees to recognize each other at company-wide meetings. You could have an award that employees can give to each other or give employees a way to send each other handwritten notes.
  • Reward employees. Send your employees a gift as a thank you, or make time to celebrate together. And these rewards don’t have to be costly. A voucher to a restaurant or a bottle of wine can go a long way. As they say, it’s the thought that counts.
  • Be consistent. Positive reinforcement should be delivered fairly to keep employees engaged and motivated. Playing favorites can breed resentment. Be sure to recognize everyone on their excellent work, not just your superstars.

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