3 Ingredients for Successful Employee Retention Strategies

five employees around a table looking at a paper

In an age where employee retention is often cloaked in buzzwords and fleeting TikTok trends, Great Place To Work's latest research sheds light on a modern – and enduring – approach to employee retention strategies

Great Place To Work® stands at the forefront of cultivating workplace cultures where employees don't just stay, they thrive. Through our rigorous methodology and our Trust Index™ Survey, Great Place To Work helps organizations of all sizes identify and build high-trust, high-performance cultures. 

Looking beyond the traditional enticements of large salaries and extensive perks, the real magnet for top talent today involves cultivating a company atmosphere enriched with purpose, pride, and fun. It's about creating spaces where employees feel genuinely connected to their work and to each other.

Purpose: The Soul of Work


Purpose at work is the cornerstone of a fulfilling career. Employees are no longer content with just "a job” — they seek roles that offer them a sense of contribution to something greater. The report highlights that individuals who find purpose in their work are 2.7 times more likely to stay. This isn't just about the work itself but about embedding a culture where every team member feels they're part of a bigger mission.

Here’s an example of an employee quote from the Trust Index Survey: "The staff here go above and beyond to meet patient needs... I chose nursing as a career because I felt it was my calling... When you are surrounded by a team that shares that purpose, it makes your work meaningful and fulfilling." - A nurse at Great Place To Work Certified™ company, Southern Ohio Medical Center

Employees feel a profound sense of purpose when their work aligns with their values and aspirations. They want to make a tangible difference, touch lives, and contribute to a cause greater than themselves.

Pride: The Badge of Honor


Workplace pride comes from being part of a company that not only excels in its field but also cares for its community and environment. A workplace that fosters pride is one where achievements are celebrated, efforts are recognized, and employees are encouraged to grow and succeed. According to the report, feeling proud of one's workplace makes employees 2.2 times more likely to remain with the company. 

A palpable pride resonates through this survey comment: "I work with a truly amazing team... One of the advantages of working here is that I’m surrounded by sharp people who care... Our team is passionate about what they do because they know that their contributions and ideas matter." - An employee at Great Place To Work Certified™ company, Management Recruiters of Tallahassee (MRT)

Pride emerges not just from personal achievements but from being part of a team and an organization that values and celebrates each individual's contributions. It's about the collective pride in the company's mission, values, and impact on the community and industry.

Feeling proud of one's workplace makes employees 2.2 times more likely to remain with the company. 

Great Place to work Survey


Fun: Fuel for the Engaged Workplace


Fun at work might sound frivolous to some, but it's a critical element in building a cohesive and vibrant team. According to our research, a fun work environment leads to a 1.7 times greater likelihood of employees sticking around. Fun doesn't necessarily mean constant entertainment — it’s about creating a space where laughter, camaraderie, and joy are part of the everyday fabric.

This employee’s response powerfully reflects a sense of fun: "No matter how difficult the circumstances, it’s fun to work at Nugget. There’s a touch of humor and a special family culture... Thanks to our CEO and his family, we have a safe, fun, and rewarding place to work..." - An employee at Great Place To Work Certified company, Nugget Markets.

Fun in the workplace transcends mere entertainment; it's about creating a culture where joy, camaraderie, and a sense of belonging thrive. It's the little moments of laughter and shared experiences that build a strong, united community at work.

Innovative Retention-Driving Practices for the Modern Workplace


Forward-thinking companies are taking these insights to heart, implementing innovative practices that breathe life into these principles. From flexible working arrangements that honor work-life balance to inclusive leadership strategies that ensure every voice is heard, the landscape of what makes a great place to work is shifting dramatically.

Actionable Tips for HR Leaders and Managers


1. Foster a Sense of Purpose: Communicate your company's vision and mission regularly. Involve employees in goal-setting sessions and show them how their work contributes to the larger objectives.

2. Celebrate Achievements: Make recognition a part of your company culture. Celebrate both individual and team successes regularly to build pride in your workplace.

3. Inject Fun into the Workplace: Organize team-building activities, celebrate milestones, and encourage moments of levity and relaxation amidst the hustle.

The Impact of Leadership and Culture


Leaders play a pivotal role in embedding these values into the fabric of the company, not by issuing directives from the top, but by embodying the principles of purpose, pride, and fun in every interaction and decision. A leader's commitment to these values can inspire their teams to achieve more and stay longer.

Crack the Code for a High-Retention Workplace


Great Place To Work’s report "Unlocking the Secrets of Employee Retention" is not just a collection of data points; it's a call to action for every organization aiming to thrive in today's competitive landscape. By prioritizing purpose, pride, and fun, companies can transform their work environments into spaces where talent not only flourishes but also remains committed for the long haul.

In the journey towards creating the ultimate workplace, it's these elements that will differentiate the good from the great. As HR leaders, CHROs, and employee experience managers, the onus is on us to lead the charge, transforming our workplaces into ecosystems of engagement, employee happiness, and sustained employee retention.