According to Gallup’s “State of the American Workplace” report, 51 percent of employees are searching for new jobs or watching for openings.  Since replacing valuable employees can be expensive and result in lost productivity, businesses of all sizes and industries should wake up and take action.

However, by action, I don’t mean blocking employee internet access to Monster, Indeed, or Zip Recruiter.  Instead, take steps to create a more engaging and fulfilling work environment.  Granted, that’s easier said than done, and you will never make everyone happy.  Floyd in accounting will continue to accuse someone of eating his lunch from the communal fridge and Janice in customer service will forever be disappointed that leadership doesn’t support her efforts to start a corporate quidditch team.

By addressing the following issues, organizations can do a lot to turn dissatisfied employees into fulfilled team members.

78 percent of employees doubt their leaders have a clear direction for the organization.

Unless your team knows its target destination, it’s difficult to tell when it’s gone off track. It’s also challenging for a team member to evaluate his or her own progress when they don’t know where they should be at any given interval.

Successful organizations set clear mission and vision statements that leverage the unique personalities, talents, and ideas of its people. Once established, an organization’s mission and vision statements will guide behaviors and influence decisions moving forward. If something isn’t aligned with your mission and vision, vote it down and move on. Hence, Janice has no quidditch team to cheer on.

Now that you know what kind of organization you want to be, how will you become an efficient, successful business? By creating and following a strategic plan, you have not only set goals, but have also established a roadmap to get there with checkpoints along to way to evaluate your progress and make necessary revisions.

By adhering to your strategic plan, you can improve the public’s perception of your brand, differentiate yourself from the competition and optimize your service delivery. But most of all, a strategic plan makes it crystal clear to your team what your brand is and how it wants to perform – making it easier for them to reinforce It at every opportunity.

40 percent of employees said they weren’t clear on what was expected of them.

OUCH! This is either an unfortunate oversight of corporate leadership or employees are staring at their phones during orientation. No matter how large or small it is, an organization should have a few clear core values that are written, communicated and enforce. These core values will ensure a positive customer or client experience at every touchpoint. Please note that Floyd would like to suggest that Law and Order be adapted as a core value to prevent future egg salad larceny.

As for individual goals, they should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based). Those who exceed their goals should be recognized or rewarded. Those who fall short should be coached. Ignore positive behavior and it will likely go unrepeated. Ignore bad behavior and watch it spread like wildfire.

87 percent of employees do not strongly agree that their leaders communicate effectively with the organization.

Leadership should communicate with its team often and on a regularly scheduled basis. The communication should reflect the brand’s mission and vision while providing an update on where the team is in relationship to its goals. Where are you excelling? Where are you falling short and how can your team correct the situation? Are you recognizing your stars? And, most importantly, if you didn’t have to, would you read it? Make sure the content is brief, clear, and formatted for easy reading and understanding.

Only 3 in 10 employees say that someone at work encourages their development.

Your employees can be your most valuable asset. As such, they deserve to be provided with the tools they need to succeed – sales training, product education, collateral materials, or opportunities and encouragement to network in the community. And no, Janice, quidditch matches are not considered a networking opportunity.

Help is available

Need help turning your office of malcontents into a beehive of productive brand ambassadors? Allow Electrum Branding to assist you with everything from establishing vision, mission and value statements and creating a strategic plan to effective communication and employee training. Contact the brand experts at Electrum for your employee retention strategy.

About the Gallop Report

The 212-page report used data collected from more than 195,600 U.S. employees via the Gallup Panel and Gallup Daily tracking in 2015 and 2016 and more than 31 million respondents through Gallup’s Q12 Client Database.