Employers, Don’t End the Courtship Once the Offer Letter is Signed

Top tips for showing the same amount of interest to an employee as a recruit

Hiring managers often do a great job of wooing a prospective candidate when they are eager to add him or her to their team.  They put a lot of effort into representing their organization well and putting their best foot forward.  However, all too often their enthusiasm wanes once the offer letter is signed and the recruit becomes an official employee.

A word of caution: Don’t let the courtship end once the offer letter is signed.  A successful hiring process should lead right into a successful retention process.  Don’t let the sizzle fizzle just because the recruit is now on your payroll.  Put in the necessary work to keep them engaged and motivated.

Treat Your Employees Well if You Want Their Best Work and Loyalty

courtshipYou’ve probably heard it said, “treat your employees like your customers.”   This should be more than a pithy phrase if you intend to keep your talent.  An organization that adopts the same treatment for its employees as it does its customers is intentional about treating their employees well.

This customer-centric philosophy includes at least three components.  First, ensure that your employees have clear expectations.  Second, be certain that employees know they are appreciated and valued as a person, not just a means to an end.  And finally, find ways to make work enjoyable for your employees.

Set Clear Expectations to Ensure Good Outcomes

Setting clear expectations may not sound like an enticing way to retain your employees, but the lack of clear expectations is a sure way to leave them unmotivated and dissatisfied.  Just as a customer wants to understand the specifics of the service or product you’re delivering, your employees want to understand the specifics of what they’re expected to deliver.

If your staff is working their hardest only to discover they’re aiming at the wrong target they will be discouraged quickly.  Being confused on what is expected of them is certain to demotivate your employees.  Be clear in communicating the desired outcome.

Appreciate Your Employees as Individuals

During the final stages of hiring your top candidate, you were probably very excited about your future together. Continue to stoke that enthusiasm.  Express your appreciation for all that your employees do. Employees want to feel like valued contributors, not a number.  To best address this, be sure to build relationships with your employees.  Care about them as individuals.

Tips for appreciating your employees as valuable team members:

  • Greet your employees. Don’t start in on a list of demands when you first see them.
  • Have face-to-face conversations – not just emails.
  • Ask your employees about their job satisfaction – find out what they enjoy most about their job.
  • Talk to your employees about their personal life – ask about their families, their interests, their personal concerns.
  • Simply say “thank you”. Let them know that you’re happy to have them working for you.
  • Ask your employees for their opinion. Find out what they recommend to address issues.
  • Be transparent. You won’t have all the answers, so let your employee see you’re very much like them.
  • Trust your employees. You hired them because you thought they had what it takes to get the job done.  Trust them to do a great job. Small failures are normal and great learning opportunities.
  • Be positive. Your attitude goes a long way in making others feel positive and happy to be working for you.

Motivate Employees – it can be large or small, tangible or intangible

If you’ve done a good job with setting clear expectations and treating your employees with genuine care, it’s time to add some additional motivators.  Not everything needs to be incentivized, nor should it be, but there is great motivation in having something to work towards.  There’s also a lot of value in using this gentle push to see what potential can be unlocked.

Motivators come in many forms.  Be creative and think about the interests of your team members.  Here are a few ideas for making work a little more fun.

  • Give your employees goals. This nurtures your employees by helping them be a part of the company growth.
  • Add perks. What would make the office a bit more fun?
  • Provide incentives such as a bonus, a gift, a free ½ day off.
  • Offer flexible hours. Everyone peaks at different times, take that into consideration.
  • Provide learning opportunities. A conference, a networking event, a training course, etc.
  • Promote from within. Give your employees something to shoot for.

Continue to treat your talent with care and appreciation. Each employee should know they are a valued member of the team.

This kind of treatment will be noticed and will develop the right kind of ambassadors for your organization.  These ambassadors – employees who talk about work life – will share their positive experience with others which leads to a steady stream of interested talent coming to you. The ROI for continuing your enthusiasm will be seen and felt by people inside and outside your organization.

Where do you need to improve in this area? Centennial is ready to help.  888-366-3760

Additionally, your onboarding process sends a loud message about how you care for your employees.  If your onboarding process needs help, Leadership Excelleration offers solutions.


Whether it's writing blog articles, email drip campaigns, job descriptions, marketing material, or developing presentations, I stay busy sharing the benefits of partnering with a trusted search firm. I thoroughly enjoy creating things that benefit others in simple and clear ways.

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