To Increase Talent Retention, Form Emotional Bonds

Reading Time: 3 minutes

To the corporate world,

We know for a fact you are worried about talent attrition. People are leaving. Repeatedly. And sometimes, for no apparent reason. You haven’t heard of any real negative issues. Not that many complaints. The company is also doing fairly well.

These questions pop up in your head.

“Why aren’t we able to make these people?”

“How can we make these people stay?”

Soon, you discuss with HR on how to retain your talent.

It usually goes like this:

  1. Look at the prevailing salary market rates and offer more attractive packages, higher salaries, better bonuses
  2. Create a nicer work place with all the accompanying perks one can think of
  3. Do some team-building activities every 6 months
  4. Offer trainings every once in a while

That sounds reasonable. However it seems that it’s not working. People are still leaving. Why?

Diagnosing the issue

Imagine this for a second. You are a child. Your parents buy you the most expensive gifts, bring you to the best hotels on vacation, and take you to the fanciest restaurants to dine at. You live in a state-of the-art mansion with everything a child would dream of. You have great friends at school that come over to your house to play every day of the week. That sounds like the life of a highly-privileged child that should have nothing to worry about. That sounds pretty good, right?

This is where the other side of the story shows.

Your parents are seldom home. Even when they are, they are not really present. They don’t spend quality time with you. They ask you vague questions about whether you’ve done your homework and tell you that you need to perform better in the next test.

They ask you questions, but they don’t really ask the right questions. They think they know about you, but they don’t take the time to understand who you are.

How does that make you feel?

Photo by Duy Pham on Unsplash

Employees feel, too

Emotionally, you do not feel cared for. The important word here is emotionally. Time, attention, and care create an emotional bond. And that bond is the strongest there is.

Unfortunately, in most companies, people don’t feel valued and cared for, emotionally. They don’t feel valued as individuals. There is little or no emotional connection to the company.

This is why they leave.

Imagine one person leaves. The people who work closely with them feel like they’ve lost a strand of emotional connection. Over time, those people decide to leave as well. These strands of emotional connections start to seem like empty gaps in a mesh. Your company is that mesh.

This is where talent retention becomes a problem.


Strengthen that mesh

We know, there is no one solution to talent retention. Just simply ensuring employees form emotional bonds with you/the company isn’t guaranteed to make them stay.

However, employees that feel valued and have stronger connections to the the company itself would feel like that have an increased sense of purpose. This doesn’t make it impossible for them to leave, but it makes it easier for them to stay.

Remember: Treat your talents like individuals who need to be cared for. Get to know them on an individual and emotional level. Create an environment of caring, of sharing, of connecting. Create a bond. An emotional bond. Because these bonds are harder to break out of the mesh.

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