It’s so easy to think that working for a big organisation or earning loads of money is the key to have people stay in your organisation. And sometimes we think the purpose behind what we do can be enough to keep team members onboard, but it’s not. Instead, here is what you need to do to retain your talents.
Why Purpose Isn’t Enough
First, let’s dig a bit deeper into the idea that having a purpose-driven organisation will be enough to motivate your team. While it definitely can help at the beginning, it won’t hold as a motivation forever. Especially if the purpose of what you are doing, isn’t constantly shared.
And here is how you can test to see if you are being constant with those reminders. Answer these questions:
- How often do you share the wins of the company with your team?
- What have you put in place to share the stories of the people who are benefitting from your work?
- When was the last time you convene with your team just to listen?
When you don’t consistently share the positive impact of what you do, work just feel like work. There is no passion, no motivation, no inspiration, no creativity. Which also means, people perform less.
But here is what you need to do instead
You chose your team because of their unique skills. And because of that, you want to keep working with them. However, you sensed that something wasn’t right. People are starting to complain, they don’t show up for meetings, their writing is not inspiring … and you start thinking what could be wrong.
Now, instinctively you’d look for a solution and implement it.
But in reality, what needs to be done is listening.
Which is why I love storytelling. Business storytelling isn’t just a way for you to share what you do with the outside world, inside world, colleagues, partners … it’s actually a way to create an entire culture. And that culture is based on listening.
How business storytelling will make you a better listener
Think about it, what is the one thing you need to do to absorb a story?
You need to listen.
And if you’re used to have stories shared with you, you are also used to listen.
Which is what people need both in their personal and professional lives.
The more you create a culture based on business storytelling, the more you will create a culture based on listening.
This is something I have elaborated, surveyed and wrote about. And the evidence comes both from my personal experience and from my work.
Why should we listen?
The reasons why we need to listen are many, let me list some of them:
- To learn what people think
- To discover what’s not working
- To discover what’s working
- To discuss how people feel
And we need those information because with those, our business work better. If I know that my team is stressed out, I know I have to either make space for them to prioritise mental health or I have to change something in the way we work to make sure they are less stressed out.
You would do that, first of all because you care about other human beings.
Secondly, because a team that is not feeling good, is a team that is not working well.
A team that is not listened to, is a team that doesn’t feel like they belong. And people who don’t feel like they belong, leave.
So here is what you are going to do: you’re going to start including business storytelling as part of your company culture. You’ll start small, with a simple step like booking a call with me or organising a listening session. And then we can take it from there.