Employee retention rate is a critical measure in any business.
While turnover is normal, there comes a point where losing too much of your talent to other companies should cause concern. Furthermore, even if you realize that your retention rate is far lower than it should be, how do you go about fixing it? Diagnosing what is causing your turnover is no easy feat.
George and Taylor are partners running a small digital marketing & SEO agency, Digital Third Coast. They realized that their employee turnover was too high and it was costing them.
George and Taylor would attract talent and begin to build a strong team with excellent training in digital skills. But just a year or two after someone would join the agency, the employee would leave for other digital marketing positions. They knew this hire, train up, and leave pattern was costing them big in several areas; their client satisfaction, and team morale would suffer, they weren’t growing their management team, and it cost them too much on the bottom line.
They also knew that this was not something they could fix on their own. The two needed a trusted, outside perspective to help them break the turnover wheel that had been built by current management practices and create better future. George and Taylor say that a business partner relationship is very much like a marriage. There is give and take and patterns that become second nature. Without someone from the outside they just couldn’t see new ways of doing it.
The duo had long considered getting a business coach as a step towards improving operations and had heard great things about Anchor Advisors, Ltd. They met with Brad Farris and his team and hired them as their coach.
Brad got to work to help George and Taylor with their turnover, but they ended up working on so much more! Budgeting, hiring, team morale, management as well as avoid a few potential landmines in the process…
Brad’s overview and assessment of Digital Third Coast uncovered areas that were putting the agency at risk.
First, they needed to practice more strategic financial planning. The agency had always kept a handle on their “books” but didn’t have any tools or process in place to guide decisions on what kind of investments and expenses to take on and when. George and Taylor were operating on a lot of “gut instinct” when it came to large investments like bringing on new team members or clients.
With coaching, Brad taught the agency how to conduct proper financial forecasting so they could properly scale, plan, and invest in their business. These forecasts enabled them to see problems before they materialized so that they could plan, and make decisions to head them off, or at least minimize their impact. They learned how to plan for the future of the business using smart forecasting so that they would always spend wisely, at the appropriate rate, and maintain the company’s profitability.
Anchor Advisors, Ltd. also helped George and Taylor diagnose why their employees were leaving too quickly and too often. Consistently hiring replacement team members was creating excess expense and compromising the ability for George and Brad to build a solid culture that kept team members in for the long haul.
Brad surveyed the industry and internal operations of Digital Third Coast. He uncovered top reasons why people were leaving so quickly from the agency – discovering that salaries were too low and there were no paths for growth so Digital Third Coast had little chance of retaining top talent in a competitive marketplace. George and Taylor long suspected this and never knew what to do about it, but with solid data they could make choices to change their situation.
Brad helped the agency find a sweet spot in salary for each position. These new figures would help employees remain competitively compensated but still kept the agency thriving. The boost in salary would keep turnover lower and save the agency in costs long term, making the higher salaries easier to manage over time. He also helped George and Taylor map out levels and growth opportunities for the team, which drove improved performance as team members reached for their new growth goals.
This along with some other changes implemented with policies, perks, and benefits helped the ship navigate choppy waters more smoothly.
Digital Third Coast is now operating from a much more solid and strategic position than before.
Changes that can rock financials are now carefully budgeted and forecasted without putting strain on the agency. For example, the company recently moved. They were able to forecast the proper timing for such a large change and did not put the company at risk while taking on a large expense.
Best of all, employee turnover has slowed down drastically. While there is still some turnover, it is at a much more normal and manageable level. Before working with Brad, George and Taylor had trouble keeping any employee past the 2 year mark, now they are leading a team full of folks that have put in 4, 5, or 6 years at the agency. Employee morale has greatly improved and the paths for growth and success has given everyone good things to work towards. Retention rate continues to improve and George and Taylor are looking forward to the next steps!
With Anchor Advisors’ guidance the agency owners are now able to plan for bigger and better things on the horizon. They are no longer just trying to catch up and stop leaks. Brad’s coaching has given them the foresight, tools, and team to dream big.