3 Ways to Hold on to Your Workers


Talent management starts long before that new employee signs on the dotted line

A sure sign of growth, hiring new employees is always an exciting time for a business. But with growth comes great responsibility, since employees are a vital part of what the business represents. For small businesses, it’s one thing to be able to hire and another beast altogether to retain the hired talent.

Here are three ways to nurture and keep your staff happy.


1. Seek an outsider’s perspective

From seeing the big picture to finding the right fit, hiring professionals do more than filter résumés. Often, they provide a much-needed outside-looking-in perspective for the business. One of the most common mistakes Noelle Johnson, founder of My Interview Buddy, has seen when business owners conduct the hiring themselves is the likelihood they’ll hire their twin, instead of who the business needs. Then they’ll expect their new hire to act and react identically to themselves. Needless to say, this ends in disappointment for both the employer and the new employee.

Hiring is an expensive process even when done right. In a survey by The Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) of more than 2,000 HR professionals, the average time to fill a position was 36 days in 2016 while the average cost-per-hire peaked at $4,425. That was a $300 increase from the previous year. Time and money are resources small businesses cannot afford to waste. So invest in the help you need today to spare yourself the headaches of tomorrow and beyond.



2. ‘Hire character, train skill’

By no means are we trivializing skills. In a perfect world, you’d hire someone whose character is as great as their skills. But since we don’t live in a perfect world, we’ll have to choose. “No brilliant jerks” is how our segment leader, Matt Rissell, summarizes the hiring policy at TSheets. The right character will grow your business. The right skill often only grows itself.

History has repeatedly shown us how one unscrupulous employee can be all it takes to change an organization’s culture and bring a giant to its knees. There is a reason why Warren Buffet famously said that when he looks to hire, integrity is the most important trait. Without it, intelligence and energy will die. As amoral machines take over more functions at work, it seems apt that the right human touches are now more important than ever for businesses to stand out.


3. Inspire every employee to lead

Richard Montañez landed a janitorial position at a California Frito-Lay plant in the 1970s. As the story goes, one day he saw a companywide video wherein then-CEO Roger Enrico supposedly said, “We want every worker in this company to act like an owner. Make a difference. You belong to this company, so make it better.”

Montañez took the message to heart. When he chanced upon a batch of unflavored Cheetos at the plant, he took it home, experimented, and called Enrico to pitch a new flavor idea. Enrico took his call and stuck to his words. Thus, the beloved Flamin’ Hot Cheetos was born. Montañez has since been promoted from his old role.


Build your people, and they’ll build your business

By sharing your dreams and goals with your employees, you empower them to grow in ways you can only imagine. When it comes to his employees, legendary leader Brad Smith, the executive board chairman of Intuit, stands steadfastly by this variation of the African proverb: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.


How to Retain Small Business Talent

On Wednesday, February 6, TSheets and QuickBooks will team up to present the free webinar “How to Retain Small Business Talent.” Join Rick Jensen, Intuit’s Senior Vice President of Human Resources, and other leading experts for an essential overview of everything you need to know about managing and retaining small business employees.


  1. Marila Marrero says:

    Always hear the great ideas all of your employees have. You’ll be surprised…

  2. Neil S. Revollo says:

    Curious as to why Dottie referred to machines as “amoral”? It’s not as if the machines taking over certain lower order business functions through automation are hurting workplaces. On the contrary, they are enriching the workplace by promoting more higher order job roles to be staffed by employees who seek to contribute thoughts, ideas, and brainstorm amongst themselves new ways of creating new business opportunities. Jobs in which limited repetitious movements were the order are fast disappearing by the onset of robots which are better suited toward these life draining tasks, which don’t provide employees much room for creativity, adding ideas toward business growth, or overall mental conditioning. For if we look at a typical assembly line job role one is just needed to carry out some very limited range of movement in a ridiculous number of iterations for the end goal of producing some product or service. No thought is wanted nor promoted on behalf of the poor souls who find themselves clocking in each day to carry out these repetitious movements that result in body ache from limited range of motion. I may be oversimplifying it, but truly I can’t think of any worse way to use human capital than on some assembly line carrying out work which is better suited toward a robot which doesn’t incur health care costs, long term damage to one’s body, and vary in the number of “widgets” produced each hour/day/shift.

    In my opinion, the most prized asset in the future will be an employee’s God-given creativity as that currently can’t be reproduced by machines and will likely take decades to surpass in its ability to problem solve, brainstorm with other employees, and communicate effectively with one’s customers. Creativity will be the order of the day and will dictate which companies rise and fall in various industries once automation becomes ubiquitous and human capital becomes one’s most prized asset in terms of differentiation against competition. How many times have you found yourself doing some business process that you mutter to yourself that a machine would be better apt to do this mundane, repetitious, soul-consuming task. It’s not like machines fatigue or make errors as a result thereof.

    On another note, how can we access a recording of the webinar yesterday regarding how to retain small business talent? I’m curious if TSheets has a business plan available or book regarding how the company came to achieve the sort of work environment it is known for producing among its employees. Every time I speak to a TSheets representative they are the most enthusiastic, well-mannered, and kind/helpful receptionists I’ve experienced in the multiple services I currently am enrolled under as a business. I don’t receive anywhere near the top notch service I’ve come to expect from TSheets from my current payroll processor, merchant processor, DocuSign.com, and others.

    I find it remarkable and want to learn more how they have come to achieve this harmony among their employees as well as maintain enthusiasm levels throughout the day. These sort of model companies can give small business owner’s ideas which can often be very powerful toward maintaining workers who would otherwise prefer to work for a larger outfit with more clout and opportunity. I hope to hear more about how TSheets came to achieve this model work environment among employees.

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