Every company faces the challenge of employee turnover. In the transportation industry, driver retention is one of the top challenges motor carriers face due in large part to an aging workforce and fewer new drivers entering the profession.
But do not lose sight of the fact that you cannot afford to lose other workers as well. The COVID-19 pandemic has employers struggling to adjust to an ever-changing job market. It is a job-seekers’ market, but motor carriers have been dealing with this reality since the driver shortage began.
Still, no one wants to lose good people, especially a quality driver. One way to avoid this and improve employee retention is by building relationships through coaching.
Coaching also demonstrates that you want to see employees succeed. If employees know you are investing in their success, that builds loyalty, and loyalty may prove the deciding factor when an employee is confronted with another job opportunity.
Remember, humans are wired to be social, and in this time of social distancing and social media, taking the time to coach an employee rather than telling him or her what to do and how to do it can have a profound impact on your employee’s morale and willingness to stay with the company. As a coach, your greatest asset is the ability to listen. Here are three tips to improving your listening skills:
Do not interrupt employees while they are expressing their ideas for a solution. Also, do not try to fill a pause in the conversation while the other person is thinking. Give the person time to gather his or her thoughts.
After the employee is done speaking, ask questions to clarify your understanding or to help that person think through his or her thoughts more. Try open-ended questions instead of closed-ended questions.
Do not allow distractions to interfere in the conversation or interrupt the other person’s train of thought. Avoid distractions like checking your phone to show the other person he or she has your attention.
CALL TO ACTION
Conduct coaching training for all personnel who supervise or mentor employees.
Practice not interrupting other people while having a conversation.
Put away your cell phone and avoid other distractions while communicating with others.
Create three open-ended questions you can use while practicing your listening skills.
The information in this article is provided as a courtesy of Great West Casualty Company and is part of the Value-Driven® Company program. Value-Driven Company was created to help educate and inform insureds so they can make better decisions, build a culture that values safety, and manage risk more effectively. To see what additional resources Great West Casualty Company can provide for its insureds, please contact your safety representative, or click below to find an agent.
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