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Centricity Podcast

Mar 16, 2021

The Value of Culture in Retaining Great Talent

Continuing our series on sales culture and talent, we’re talking with Luke Allen about retaining great talent on the heels of our discussions about attracting and developing that talent. 

Aligned is built and designed for executives of emerging middle-market companies; executives who are looking for new ways to leverage sales and marketing for more revenue.

Informal meetings:

  • If a typical sales rep is worth $1.5 million, we can assume that 30 percent of that goes to the bottom line. So every good salesperson is worth about $500,000 to an executive. If you multiply that times 10 salespeople, that’s about $5 million. That makes this an important conversation.
  • The biggest pain point Luke hears is that companies invest resources into people who get trained and then they leave for a competitor or a different job. 
  • If you’ve brought in top talent and you have a good onboarding strategy, you must first have a development plan for where that person is going within your company, and you meet with that person often to review it. 
  • Bring up professional development with your sellers. Discuss it weekly or monthly, over lunch, or while you’re traveling together. Use a calendar or a tool like followupthen to remind yourself to revisit the topic at some point in the future.
  • Keeping these topics in mind communicates to your team that they are valuable to you. 

Building a connected culture:

  • Culture and retention are directly connected. If your people feel connected to their coworkers and to the bigger purpose of the company, retention goes through the roof.
  • If you fail to build this kind of culture, you’ll fail to retain top talent, and that will impact your ability to make money. 
  • Change your focus to developing new technology and new products instead of making sure your people are engaged and working hard. These steps will drive business and grow the company. 
  • Great culture will encourage people to hold each other accountable so you don’t have to. 
  • Finances aren’t necessarily the most important consideration for your team members.

Lessons learned:

  • “A talent” people are upwardly mobile. Most of them want to grow, so you’ll eventually have people who are all competing for similar spots. If you don’t run into the issue of your team members looking to grow and develop, you may have “B,” “C,” or “D” players who aren’t concerned about the upward push.
  • Out-compete your competitors with culture and human capital in addition to good pay.
  • You can measure culture through the retention of your higher-rated employees. Look at the top 20 percent of your employees and see how well you’re retaining those people. Look beyond money to consider whether they love working for you and your managers and whether they love the job. Those results will give you the hard truth about your culture. 

Episode resources:

  • FitzMartin is all about a sales-first culture and a solid sales culture as well. We want you to find new ways to leverage marketing and sales. 
  • Aligned is a podcast for executives of emerging middle-market companies; executives who are pursuing growth and looking for new levers to pull. 
  • To connect with Sean Doyle, find him on LinkedIn, or learn more about FitzMartin on the company web page

You can also connect with Luke Allen on LinkedIn.