- Reward Management
- Salary Surveys
- Reward Consulting
- Performance & Development
- Job Design & Job Grading
- Strategic HR Consultancy
- HR Strategy
- People Transformation
- Succession Management
- People Strategy Roadmap
Most likely you have come across the popular social media meme in which the CFO asks: “What if we invest in developing our people & they leave us?” and the CEO replies with: “What if we don’t & they stay?” I bet we can all think of a CFO who would ask this question. Some of you are probably quick to praise the CEO and condemn the CFO. While others will rather side with the CFO, especially in times when cost management is high on the agenda.
Obviously it wouldn’t be very sustainable for a company to simply be a “talent mill” that recruits, hires, and trains employees only to lose them as soon as they learn the ropes. So in a way the CFO makes a valid point. Yet building on learnings from past experiences by ensuring business continuity is critical. Without it, companies repeat the same mistakes over and over again. Losing this backstory and having to rebuild that knowledge and expertise within a team time and again, entices one of the greatest costs of employee churn. So from this point of view, the CEO is right. But which is it then?
Investing in the retention and development of your best talent is actually the best thing to do both for your company and your employees. But if each individual grows their skill set and becomes increasingly more valuable, how will you be able to keep them? What is a sustainable model for investing in employee development, without falling into the trap of becoming a “talent mill”?
There are a few basic concepts which need to be in place in order to keep your best employees:
But even with all that in place, some will eventually leave. They will outgrow their role and need higher levels of responsibility, in some cases even higher than what your team or your organization can offer them. So yes, some of them will still leave you for greater opportunity. Which takes us back to the initial question “How can investing in employee development ever be sustainable?”
A growth mindset within your company will only become sustainable when you also start to proactively anticipate your employees’ inevitable departure from the moment they walk in.
So what will happen if we invest in developing our employees and then they leave us? I suggest you do the following: Show up for their farewell parties and celebrate all they have brought to you and to the company as they grew. Wish them well and actually make the effort of staying in touch, because they WILL pay it forward one day, to you, your company, your Employer Brand and those they will lead in the future.
Have a look at our training courses and discover how we can help you develop the talent within your organisation
Submit your HR challenge to us. Together we look at how we can help you.