Engage Employees or Lose Them

Engage Employees or Lose Them
– by Colle Davis

In today’s competitive job market, attracting and retaining top talent is critical for business success. One of the most significant factors influencing employee turnover is manager behavior. This article explores why focusing on people-centric leadership is essential for building engaged and productive teams.

Indeed’s Career Guide offers great suggestions for caring for employees, “Most employees want to feel like their managers and supervisors value them as individuals. It motivates them to work hard and contributes to job satisfaction and retention. As a company leader, you can take steps to take care of your employees and improve morale and productivity in your department or organization.” Indeed’s article delves into great suggestions for employee care:

  • Encourage open communication
  • Support career growth and recognize hard work
  • Offer competitive benefits
  • Schedule social time
  • Offer to help and demonstrate your trust
  • Get to know your employees
  • Be transparent
  • Stand by your employees
  • Pay fairly


“The best fertilizer is the footsteps of the farmer,” echoes a Japanese proverb, emphasizing the importance of nurturing and supporting employees. Recognizing and valuing individuals as part of a productive team becomes a strategic advantage in talent retention.

Managers should be mindful of tailoring rewards to individual preferences. Understanding how each employee needs to be nurtured, whether through occasional flex time, public acknowledgment, or increased responsibilities, contributes to building a loyal and motivated workforce.

While forming positive relationships with team members is natural, favoritism can breed resentment and hinder overall performance. Instead of focusing on “special groups,” managers should strive to cultivate a supportive environment for all and encourage collaboration.

The key to retaining employees in today’s world lies in retraining managers in the fine art of people skills. The main driver of employee turnover is often perceived as a lack of care from managers. Retraining becomes crucial, and companies must be willing to invest in upgrading the skills of their managers to foster more productive and engaged teams.

Studies show that employees who receive praise and rewards for their good work are more likely to remain loyal to their manager and committed to the company. This underscores the urgency for company leaders to develop effective support and encouragement strategies to cultivate their workforce.


To complement this approach, managers should act as suppliers of resources, ensuring employees have everything they need to accomplish their tasks. This anticipatory relationship minimizes interruptions and allows for the highest possible productivity. Praising and rewarding employees for their achievements further solidifies the manager’s role as a leader and motivator.

Nurturing talent: Effective managers act as talent coaches, understanding individual strengths and aspirations. Here are some suggestions on how to involve them:

  • Offering flexible work arrangements.
  • Providing opportunities for public recognition.
  • Enabling skills development through mentorship or training.
  • Delegating tasks and fostering ownership.

Investing in manager training: Equipping managers with strong people skills is crucial for creating a positive work environment. Training programs can address critical areas:

  • Effective communication and feedback.
  • Active listening and empathy.
  • Bias awareness and inclusive leadership.
  • Performance management and coaching.

Beyond compliments: While appreciation is vital, praise specific behaviors or achievements rather than physical appearance. This behavior reinforces desired actions and avoids potential discomfort.

Cultivating loyalty: When employees feel valued and supported, they’re more likely to reciprocate that loyalty by contributing their best work and advocating for the company. Manager-employee solid relationships are vital to building a loyal and committed workforce.

Empowering through autonomy: Trusting employees to choose their work methods within reasonable parameters enhances engagement and ownership. Providing resources and guidance while offering flexibility demonstrates respect and boosts confidence.


Resource provider role: Managers are facilitators, ensuring their team has everything they need to succeed. Anticipating needs, removing roadblocks, and providing timely support, enhancing productivity and efficiency.

Conclusion: Investing in manager development and fostering a people-centric leadership approach is not just about retaining employees; it’s about unlocking their full potential and driving organizational success. By prioritizing empowerment, recognition, and genuine support, companies can create a thriving work environment where employees feel valued, engaged, and eager to contribute.

Contact me if you or someone you know needs help in these areas. I am a Senior Level Master Coach and Certified Hypnotist with nearly 40 years of experience helping corporate clients. Reserve your free thirty-minute Zoom call with me; your life will never be the same. 804-467-1536 EDT


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