By now, everyone has heard of the studies showing that employees leave managers, not companies. This reinforces how vital the direct manager’s role is in engaging and retaining an organization’s staff. Without effective management, employees will walk out the door. However, all is not lost. With these three pieces of advice, managers can take basic and immediate steps to become better leaders.


Great managers communicate effectively and often. When there is news to be shared, whether it’s a positive or negative turn of events, managers should meet with their team members to discuss what is happening. Employees do not appreciate being left in the dark or being unsure of what is happening within the organization. This applies to one-on-one time, as well. According to the Harvard Business Review, employees who do not receive quality time with their managers are more likely to be disengaged. Communicating with one’s team could be the difference between leading staff members who feel valued and leading those who do not.


Further studies have revealed that a lack of advancement and opportunities are a top reason why employees leave their organizations. A manager should take an interest in the development of each member of their team. If there is a staff member performing beyond expectations, try to find stretch assignments to continually challenge them. On the opposite side, if there is an employee who might be struggling, take the time to figure out what that employee needs to become a better performer. These actions show the employees that managers care about their development and success. As a bonus, the organization is creating individuals who may be able to fill future needs.


When your employees do an outstanding job, be sure to recognize them. Employee recognition has been shown to lead to increased job satisfaction, increased engagement and morale, and a reduction in turnover. It confirms that your employee has done well and shows other staff members that they can also be recognized for their accomplishments. Showing recognition for employees can be as simple as sending an email or singling out the employee during a staff meeting.

By communicating, developing, and recognizing employees, managers directly affect engagement, productivity, and morale. Additionally, these tips allow a manager to create deeper connections with their team members and have provided a growth opportunity for themselves in the process.