The job conditions are just right and suitable employees have been found. So what next? The drop-out rate for apprenticeships in the catering trade is almost 50 percent, higher than almost any other sector, and staff turnover in the industry is not much better either. In addition to this, skilled professionals are in short supply.
So what can employers do to encourage their staff to stay with them? A pay rise, a company car, a promotion? Many managers try to keep their employees happy with material things. This might work for a while, but it’s quite expensive in the long run and, as the old saying goes, money alone won’t make you happy. A pay rise won’t make up for dissatisfaction in the long term.
The right way to retain employees
The good news is that there are much better ways to retain employees. Surveys have shown that for around 64% of workers, the key thing that makes them want to stay with their employer is a good atmosphere at work. This can be created by building up a corporate culture.
Step 1: Establishing a corporate culture
Eine Unternehmenskultur ist ein wichtiges Tool bei der Mitarbeiterbindung, denn es gibt den Mitarbeitern (und potenziellen Bewerbern) Orientierung. Bei der Unternehmenskultur (Corporate Culture) geht es um die zentralen Punkte der Zusammenarbeit: um Führungsstil, um Entscheidungsfindungen, um Respekt, um das Verhalten aller Mitarbeiter, um Werte und eine Haltung zu Themen wie Gleichbehandlung. Eine Unternehmenskultur soll sinnstiftend sein und eine Zufriedenheit am Arbeitsplatz schaffen.
It’s important that everyone understands the corporate culture and that the same rules apply to everyone. Managers, in particular, must abide by the values and practise the corporate culture, as otherwise an imbalance arises. To avoid this from the outset, it makes sense to involve employees in developing the corporate culture.
- The first thing to do when developing a corporate culture is to precisely analyse the current situation. The questions that need to be answered are: How happy are the employees with the current situation? What do they like, and what don’t they like? What things do they want to be part of their future corporate culture? What conflicts do they see and what causes dissatisfaction in their day-to-day work?
- Aus den Ergebnissen der Analyse heraus werden gemeinsame Werte und Normen entwickelt, mit denen sich die Mitarbeiter identifizieren können.
Step 2: Implementing the corporate culture
Reden allein bringt aber noch nicht viel: Als nächsten Schritt gilt es, konkrete Maßnahmen zur Umsetzung der Unternehmenskultur festzulegen. Was muss sich ändern im Unternehmen? Wie werden die Werte und Normen im Alltag sichtbar?
Managers play an essential part in implementing the corporate culture. They must show the employees what the corporate culture looks like in practice and set a good example. Also, good managers can sense when something isn’t right; they listen to their employees and – where it makes sense – try to make changes. They mustn’t shy away from challenges, including unfamiliar ones.
Step 3: Corporate culture as an ongoing project
“Right, that’s done. Now we have a corporate culture and we know what we stand for and how to conduct ourselves.” Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as that. This is because a corporate culture must constantly evolve to keep up with the changes in external circumstances. That’s why it’s important not just to establish a corporate culture, but also to regularly review it and adapt it when necessary.
At times when skilled workers are in short supply, it’s up to the employers to act. They need to offer their employees an incentive to stay. A carefully conceived corporate culture that suits the company and its workers is something that employees can identify with. They feel valued, know that their work is appreciated, and are happy to stay.
Read more about this topic in the next posts in our series “The skills shortage – the major challenge in the gastronomy sector”:
- If it goes on like this, kitchens will be closed.
- Employer branding: smartening up for employees
- Thinking outside the box: taking a new approach to finding employees
- What the future holds: young professionals are essential
- Automated and digital: the kitchen of the future