Over the years, the concept of building and keeping talents has always been an important discourse in the business world and nonprofit sector alike. This is because a lot of organizations suffer from excessive employee turnover rates. You must be intentional as a nonprofit leader, by strategically following the necessary steps to build and keep your talents. By defining your mission and values, offering competitive compensation and benefits, providing opportunities for growth and development, fostering a positive work environment, recognizing and rewarding performance, and communicating effectively, you can attract, develop, and retain top talent for your organization. Investing in your team is not only beneficial for your organization but also the communities and causes you serve. In today’s podcast, Mike Gellman from High Five Career Coaching and Stephen Halasnik from Financing Solutions, discuss “how to build and keep your talent for nonprofits.”

How to Build and Keep Your Talent For Nonprofits: Strategies for Nonprofits

It is general knowledge that talent is the heartbeat of any organization, and this holds particularly true for nonprofits. However, building and keeping talents has posed a serious challenge to many nonprofit organizations over the years. This is due to some of its peculiarities like lack of inadequate funding seen in many nonprofit organizations. Yet, in the nonprofit sector, where passion and purpose often drive individuals, nurturing and retaining talent is paramount. Building and retaining talents enhances your organization’s productivity and ensures sustained impact in the communities it serves. So, how can you, a nonprofit leader effectively attract, develop, and retain talent?  Let’s delve into some key strategies.

Define Your Mission and Values

Every successful organization has a clear mission and defined values. As a nonprofit leader, it is crucial to establish and regularly revisit your mission statements. You must also set your organization’s values and culture straight. Sense of purpose and the desire to make a positive impact on the world is what drives nonprofits. Therefore, it is essential to clearly define your organization’s mission and values and ensure that they resonate with potential employees. When your mission and values align with those of your team members, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated to contribute to your cause.

Offer Competitive Compensation and Benefits

There is no doubt that nonprofit organizations are often unable to match the salaries offered by the private sector. However, it is still crucial for your organization to provide competitive compensation and benefits packages to their employees. Apart from offering a decent salary, your nonprofit should also provide benefits like healthcare, retirement plans, and professional development opportunities to attract and retain top talent. By doing so, you can reduce the turnover rate within your organization and create a better workplace environment for your employees. Ultimately, providing competitive compensation and benefits packages is a way to show your employees that the organization values their hard work and is committed to their success.

Provide Opportunities for Growth and Development

One of the key factors in employee satisfaction is the sense that they are growing and developing within their careers. This is particularly true in the nonprofit sector, where employees are often motivated by a sense of purpose and meaning beyond just a paycheck. To provide opportunities for growth and development, nonprofits can implement a variety of programs and initiatives, such as training programs that teach new skills and knowledge, mentorship programs that offer guidance and support from more experienced colleagues, and opportunities for advancement that allow employees to take on greater responsibilities and leadership roles.

By investing in the growth and development of your employees, you not only foster a more engaged and motivated workforce but also build a stronger, more capable team that can better serve the organization’s mission. When employees feel valued and supported in their professional development, they are more likely to stay with the organization long-term, reducing turnover and associated costs. Additionally, a focus on growth and development can help attract and retain top talent, as employees are increasingly seeking out employers who are committed to investing in their career advancement.

Provide a Conducive and Positive Work Environment

The importance of a conducive and positive work environment in any organization can never be over-emphasized. As a nonprofit leader, you must ensure to create a conducive and positive environment for your employees. Having a positive work environment is essential in building and retaining your talents as well as attracting top talents. 

What does a conducive and positive work environment entail?  A positive work environment is one that is supportive, inclusive, and respectful of its employees’ individual needs and contributions.  How do you create a positive and conducive work environment? You can achieve this by creating a culture that values work-life balance, promotes open communication, and recognizes employees’ efforts and achievements. When you establish a positive work environment, it goes a long way to ensure your team members are happy, engaged, and motivated to stay with the organization for the long term. Conversely, this leads to increased productivity, reduced turnover, and ultimately, greater success and growth for the business.

Recognize and Reward Performance

Humans tend to perform even better when you recognize and appreciate their efforts specially. Therefore, for optimum delivery of your employees, it’s important to recognize and reward them for their hard work and contributions. You can do this through formal recognition programs, such as employee of the month awards, as well as informal recognition, such as thank-you notes or shout-outs in team meetings. Recognizing and rewarding performance can help boost morale and motivation, thus, facilitating the building and retaining of your talents.

Communicate Effectively

To build and retain a strong team, effective communication must be part of your organization’s culture. You need to establish a culture of transparency and openness where employees are informed about the organizational goals and strategies. Also, you should provide regular feedback on their performance to help them grow and improve.

Encouraging open and transparent communication can help build trust and collaboration within your team. This means being clear about what you expect from your team members and what they can expect from you. It also involves active listening, acknowledging their concerns, and addressing them promptly.

Remember, effective communication is not just about talking, but also about active listening. You should create an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing their ideas and perspectives. This can lead to new insights and innovations that can benefit the organization.

About Our Guest, Mike Gellman, From  High Five Career Coaching

For over 20 years, Mike Gellman, Founder & CEO of High Five Career Coaching, has successfully facilitated numerous talent management and organizational development initiatives including succession planning, high potential leader development, employee engagement, team building, and culture change. He also a certified coach and author of the book, Pipe Dreams: 7 Pipelines of Career Success. He launched his nonprofit career in organizational development at the world-famous San Diego Zoo. 

Learn About Stephen Halasnik

Stephen Halasnik co-founded Financing Solutions, the leading provider of lines of credit for nonprofits and church financing. The credit line program for nonprofits & churches is fast, easy, inexpensive, and costs nothing to set up, making it a great backup plan when cash flow is temporarily down. Mr. Halasnik is also the host of the popular, Nonprofit MBA Podcast. The podcast brings experts to discuss fundraising, nonprofit grants, executive director leadership, nonprofit boards, and other important topics. You can learn more about the nonprofit line of credit program here or call 862-207-4118.