Ok so I'm not talking about the employee dipping their hand in the cash drawer or the manager taking product out the back door after hours, I'm talking about rival companies stealing employees to gain their inside knowledge and customer base.
How can a business protect itself from it's competitors stealing their secrets or their talent?
1 - Show employees you value their contributions. Studies show that employees and managers alike like to be recognized for their hard work and efforts, and if they are feeling undervalued or unappreciated they may be more likely to go elsewhere.
2 - Create an open and trusting relationship with your employees. Get to know them, take an interest in their life. Find out what motivates them and be straightforward and honest when it comes time to have difficult conversations.
3 - Protect yourself with a non-compete. Have an agreement in place with both employees and managers alike that prohibits them from using your companies information or customer base for any use other then to benefit your business.
4 - Be fair and reasonable with salaries. No one likes feeling like they are owed more for the work they are doing and nothing is more likely to push an employee out the door then underpaying them for their talent.
4 - Avoid the "hear no evil" mentality. Employees and managers want to work for a business that takes issues seriously. Having a "hear no evil" mentality towards work place issues and not addressing issues that are being brought forward will create resentment amongst employees.
5 - Always have an exit interview. Eventually even the best and brightest employees may move on. An exit interview will help uncover any issues you may not be aware of, will lay out your companies expectations of the departing employee, and in most cases may allow the employee to leave on good terms.