Many organizations think that there are 3 distinct approaches to “talent management”: recruit talent, develop talent or retain talent.
The secret is that if you choose to “develop” talent, retain comes right along with it like a cojoined twin or a two-fer.
Why is this the case? Most employees are looking for the types of organizations that honour their talent and employee development is a real retention tool in and of itself.
So, for those of you who are looking at the economy and worrying about how to “keep ’em” when things turn around and simply having a job isn’t enough to keep your employees, realize that if you offer development – and it aligns with your business needs – you are creating a win-win scenario, and your investment will pay off in the long run. Does this mean that you have to have elaborate development programs for every employee in your organization? No, but you should be thinking of development as a very broad spectrum of activities, some of which are not net new activities and will not incur additional cost, but can reap multiple rewards: formal training, performance support, community building, deployment and job rotation, mentoring, etc.
Maybe you just need to tell your employees that you are developing their skills in many ways and they’ll choose to stay with you through good times and bad.