When thinking about hiring and retaining productive and positive team members, its easy to lean on 3 employee-centric decisions:
- Higher pay;
- Better title;
- More flexibility with schedule.
While most advancement leaders would relish the opportunity to be able to pay team members more, to promote people consistently, and to add more flexibility to people’s schedules given their unique situations and circumstances, it’s also true that these choices can be complex and, even difficult institution-wide decisions.
Each of these variables makes a difference in attracting and keeping the best people. However, countless studies have shown that there are other variables, perhaps more easy to implement consistently, that hold considerable weight when employees make decisions about joining and staying with a team.
- Investing in the professional growth of all;
- Focus on mission and the “specialness” of our institution;
- A team approach to our work.
When leaders show a consistent interest in the future professional ambitions of team members and help team members grow professionally; when leaders consistently remind team members why the advancement work we do is so critical to making the world a better place; when leaders create space for the team to come together, to learn about and from each other, and to enjoy each other’s fellowship, the most productive and positive team members tend to stay.
Of course, this all points to the fact that the variable with the most influence regarding the formation of productive teams and retention of great team members is caring, committed, and curious leaders.