How to Retain Talented Employees

Ron Riggio
2 min readMay 8, 2022


Key points

  • Leaders must use sensible strategies to retain valuable employees.
  • Employers can focus on employee career advancement and show that they care about employees’ progress.
  • Accommodating different employee needs, such as changing work schedules, partial remote work, or other strategies may help companies as well.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to enormous changes in the world of work and in the workforce. Millions of employees moved partially or completely to online work-from-home. Many workers took stock of their employer and their careers and decided to change jobs, or take a break from work altogether. As a result, many organizations are lamenting the loss of valuable employees.

What are some strategies that leaders can use to try to keep their valuable team members?

1. Show Them Opportunities. Be sure to clearly and regularly communicate the opportunities for advancement, increased rewards, and other perks of staying in the organization. Showing concern for employees’ career development and advancement lets them know you care and is a good way to keep them with you and keep them motivated.

2. Allow for Work-Life Balance. In certain instances, leaders should be willing and able to offer accommodations for workers who want more time with family. Consider alternative work schedules, such as compressing the workweek to allow employees another day off. Is working from home a viable option? What about reduced hours? This is another way of communicating that employees are valuable and that you care.

3. Phased Retirement. A growing concern is the loss of valued employees due to impending retirement. Are there ways that you can keep those knowledgeable veterans for additional years through some sort of phased retirement, or in a consulting arrangement?

4. Consider Creative Rewards. What can you do to recognize your employees’ contributions? This might include traditional things such as bonuses and time off, but it might also involve allowing them to work on meaningful and creative projects, or providing them with upgraded tools (e.g., a laptop) to help them grow and develop.

All too often, leaders are not proactive in their efforts to keep talent. Tapping into employees’ individual needs and desires is important, as well as being transparent about what you have to offer as incentives to stay, are key.

Moving Forward

Clear and transparent communication is both the foundation for creating a great work environment and the means for developing good relationships with others. Ask yourself: How can you make employees more aware of the benefits of working with you and your organization? How can you create or gather the resources to allow you to keep talented employees? What are some retention strategies that have worked for you in the past, and can you apply those in the future?

Originally published at



Ron Riggio

Professor of Leadership and Organizational Psychology at Claremont McKenna College; Author; Consultant