We enjoyed a recent article on how hardware manufacturer, HBX Systems, created a book club that it claims helps sustain its high employee retention rate (93%).
It’s an interesting concept. Can a book club really boost retention?
Of course, the reading material is very focused. One book only in fact: The First 90 Days by Michael D. Watkins.
According to the article, all new hires, promoted employees and transitioners receive a copy and for the first three months, they meet together on a monthly basis for a “lunch and learn” round table to discuss the book. They also take part in one-to-one discussions with their managers.
Here’s why we think this approach works.
1. New people are included and valued from the start, for a lengthy period of time
At vi, we call this process New Hire Integration. It’s when a company makes the effort to go beyond giving new employees a quick orientation and IT set up. We know for a fact that when new employees feel included, valued and connected during the first 45 – 90 days in a new role, your chances of retaining them are much higher.
2. It encourages discussion, honesty and diversity
When the tone is set from the start that a company wants to hear diverse views and opinions, newcomers are much more likely to feel safe, valued and loyal.
3. It displays the company’s values and priorities
People like to know where they stand. And they like to know what their workplace stands for. The fact that HBX Systems was able to find a book that embodies its approach to business and – to a certain extent – what it expects from new hires – is powerful.
4. It offers practical advice and tools
Giving new employees access to tools that set them up for success shows that the company supports each of them.
Read this book and you’ll learn how to secure critical early wins, an important first step in establishing yourself in your new role. Each chapter also includes checklists, practical tools, and self-assessments to help you assimilate key lessons and apply them to your own situation.
Who wouldn’t benefit from a book club like this? Perhaps this is a good first start to boost retention.