Hire to Retire: Maintaining the Dash

Nine businessmen and women jumping on beach, smiling
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Do You Really Understand the Impact?

Hiring companies often forget or misunderstand the impact that a new job has on an employee.  This can include personal change management for that employee, as well as recognizing potential skills gaps, or attaining new management responsibilities. And the impact doesn’t have to be negative, it can very well and most likely it positive. And when it is, the impact on the hiring company, in turn, is also positive.

You’ve Heard Me Say it – You’ve Seen me Write it.

Hire to Retire

Hire to Retire means changing not only how we view every new hire, but also every single employee. With a gained understanding that companies want to protect their investments, doesn’t it make sense to protect their talent from the barriers which keep employees from fully investing, heart and soul, in their organizations?

It’s pretty simple what Employees want

  • Appreciation
  • Commensurate Compensation and Benefits
  • Involvement with their own Performance Management
  • Opportunities for Growth
  • Leadership Development

What employees really want is a clear understanding that there is a plan – a plan in place for them to be a valued team member of the staff and organization.
Isn’t this what every employee wants – no matter their level? To just know that we, the employees, provide value and in return, we are valued.

The Dash

We’ve all heard the story of the importance that the “dash” represents on a tombstone – the life that existed between a birth date and date of death. It is the same on each and every job history or list of work experience – We all want that time, the “dash” between our hire date and the day we leave an organization to be important, to know that we made a difference on that team, in that department, for that organization.  We all want confirmation of this simple fact:  I contributed to some success or positive change for my company or my industry. 

The Life of Your Employee

A great deal is invested in every new employee – from the early hiring process through onboarding, orientation, training, and early retention efforts. Does it not make sense to continue this investment after the 90-day mark? Past the time when new employees are eligible for benefits or a lift in their compensation. Past their probation period? Past the time when they are eligible for some paid time off? Past the time when they have mastered their current role and are ready for further learning and dev? Past the time when they have been identified as management material and identified as ready to be a part of your organization’s  succession planning program.  Of course, this makes sense, this is employee strategy.

Your employees are the life of your organization, the foundation. They are the curators and developers of culture and can be your greatest brand asset. As referrers, they are also your greatest source of hire with the ability to challenge and change the work environment as it ebbs and flows through economic highs and lows.

When Hiring is Done Right

When a right hire has been made, an opportunity exists to prove and grow the future of your organization. Employees – the right employees – crave the opportunity to give and receive more. And in today’s job market, stability is not under-rated – organizational stability and employment stability. And when an organization decides to care about and continue its investment in employees, it’s a game changer when it comes to retaining that investment.

I started in this industry working as a healthcare recruiter for a retained executive search firm.  Early on in my recruiting career, I read a book called Decency by Charles S. Lauer. I met him in person at a conference and asked him to sign my copy of his book – he smiled and nodded his head knowingly – he knew that though I was a recruiter and cared about hiring quality quickly, I also cared about the employee, that I cared about the future of HR. “People are any organizations greatest assets,” he said to me that day. He wrote in my copy of his book:

To someone who loves life and loves people. You have a great attitude!!

Whenever I feel my attitude slip or job fatigue set in – I grab this book, which is never far from my desk and I read Mr. Lauer’s words to me…

I knew it was true then, and I work to keep it true now.  For maintaining the dash takes work.


by Rayanne Thorn


Maintaining the Dash series…
Hire to Retire: Maintain the Dash
Polish Your Kindness: Learning to Say Thank You
Defining Commensurate: It’s not so easy…
HR’s Quest: Enhancing Performance Management
Nurturing Talent: Providing Opportunities for Growth
Leadership Development is a Strategic Business Priority

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