Understanding the Importance of retaining high potential employees

January 11, 2023

Discussion about retaining high potential employees

In any organization, there are different types of employees with varying skill sets and attributes. Not all employees are meant to stay with the company forever, for sure. A section of employees outshines their peers in productivity, accountability, skill development, and consistency and they are often termed as high-potential employees. It is crucial for the company management to focus on identifying and retaining employees of high potential. Without the retention of such exceptional performers, achieving consistent business growth and meeting long-term goals will be tedious.

Retaining employees of high potential- traits to look out for

Before the company management can form a robust strategy for high-potential employee retention it is necessary to identify these employees. Typically, high-potential employees have some unique traits and these are useful for identification. 

  • Desire to grow

Employees with high potential exhibit a desire to grow in the organization. They do not just stay limited to the task assigned to them.

  • Desire to learn and adapt

High-potential employees in the workforce can adapt to changing workplace situations better. They are always eager to learn new things and processes.

  • Exceptional performance

High-potential employees are eager to step out of their comfort zones and they do not limit themselves to meeting daily targets. On the contrary, such employees are found to exceed their targets more often than their peers.

  • Focus on productivity

High-potential employees in an organization are focused on staying productive. You will not find them indulging in trivial and unproductive activities. 

  • Good at teamwork

Such employees are usually good at teamwork and collaborative assignments. They fathom the ways to work with a team comprising different types of people and coordinate with others really well. 

  • High on accountability 

High-potential employees are quite accountable. They do not attempt to evade responsibilities or leave assigned tasks half-baked. 

Benefits of high-potential employee retention for businesses

When businesses succeed in retaining employees of high potential, they obtain several benefits. Regardless of the sector and its size, a business can get some major benefits by developing and developing a robust retention strategy for exceptional performers. 

Listed below is the major importance of employee retention for businesses:


  • Enables to achieve consistent growth

When a business is able to retain a majority of high-potential employees, it manages to stay on the growth trajectory without hassles. Such employees are always focused on productivity and performance and that helps the company to stick to growth targets and make profits. These employees also excel at teamwork and contribute to team performance and growth. 

  • Serves as the source of motivation

Retaining employees of high potential can be helpful for inspiring and motivating the team members in an organization. When the team members experience such exceptional performers exceeding their targets and fuelling organizational growth, they feel motivated to give their best. So, in a way, such high-potential employees act as a powerful catalyst to boost workforce morale.

  • Helps to reduce operational cost

When there is a sizable percentage of high-potential employees in the workforce, the company is able to reduce operational costs. When such employees are retained, the management does not have to spend much on many operational processes. These include training newbie employees, dealing with external vendors, managing nuances of recruitment operations etc. These skilled and exceptional performers handle such tasks meticulously- reducing the need for cost re-runs.

  • Helps improve service quality

When a company succeeds in retaining of employees with high potential, it is able to improve service quality in various ways. For example, when such exceptional performers are kept in the customer support team that leads to better customer experience. In a similar way, such employees offer an enhanced experience to loyal and returning customers. Thus, by retaining such employees businesses are able to enhance customer experience and grow their customer base.  

  • Eases succession planning

By retaining employees of high-potential an organization can be assured of an available talent pool to pick leaders from. When there are such skilled and talented employees in the workforce, picking a leader from them is easy. This is necessary when someone in a leadership position retires, leaves the job unexpectedly or moves to another level in the hierarchy. In other words, retaining high-potential employees eases the process of succession planning in an entity.

  • Helps reduce conflicts and hurdles at work

When there is a good percentage of high-potential employees in the workforce, it becomes easier to evade work-related hurdles and conflicts. Such employees focus on productivity and performance and so are keen on resolving any hurdle on their way. This mindset ensures they find ways to resolve resource-sharing or intra-team conflicts etc. Their talent and skill sets also come in handy for finding solutions to unforeseen problems at the workplace. 

Some effective ways to retain employees of high-potential

While retaining high-potential employees is a necessity for sustenance and growth for businesses, it requires the development and deployment of suitable strategies. Businesses keen on developing and implementing robust high-potential employee retention strategies can gain by seeking the services of ace business consultancy agencies. 

Listed below are some handy tips to use for the retention of high-potential employees in an entity:

  • Identification at the recruitment stage

It is prudent to identify candidates with high-potential and leadership traits at the recruitment stage. If such candidates with potential are identified during recruitment phase, it becomes easier to groom and prepare them for the future. The expertise of veteran recruitment agencies and RPO service providers can come in handy for this. Their insight and assistance can help the recruitment wing of an organization to identify and groom suitable candidates.

  • Framing a dedicated policy for employee retention

It makes sense for businesses to get a well-developed plan for high-potential employee retention. Once such employees are recruited, the process should commence to boost retention prospects. They should be exposed to procedures and given skill enhancement training. Provisions should be there to put such deserving and talented employees in the right position in the company. Once again, seeking the expertise of veteran business management consultancies can be useful in developing such policies.

  • Clear communication channel for employees

Not every well-performing employer switches to another job for a better pay package alone! In several instances, employees with high-potential and talent leave an organization owing to problems faced at the workplace and the lack of proper communication channels to lodge grievances. So, companies keen on retaining high-potential employees must ensure there are proper communication channels between the employee and the management. 

  • Specialized Developmental programs

For retaining employees of high-potential, organizations need to develop specialized training programs. Such programs will enable these exceptional performers to hone and further enhance their professional abilities. When such employees find the company is attentive to their professional growth, they are more likely to stick with it. For developing custom and effective corporate training and skill development programs for deserving employees, businesses can gain by hiring ace business consultancies

  • Keeping provisions for flexibilities

Sometimes, being a little flexible with talented and high-potential employees can help a business in retaining them for long. Some such talented and exceptional performers in the workforce appreciate flexibility over usual incentives, at times. There is no fixed formula for this but things like allowing a flexible dress code, occasional remote work options can work. Some businesses have also gained in this regard by deploying a BYOD ( Bring your own device) policy at the workplace.

  • Taking feedback periodically

Apart from having a grievance redressal mechanism in place, the management must take feedback from high-potential employees periodically. This goes a long way in ensuring employee retention.  When the feedback of such talented and exceptional performers is taken by the management periodically, it gives them a feeling of being valued. This reduces the risk of attrition, eventually. Besides, the feedback of such talented employees can prove to be beneficial for the company. 

  • Offering useful, apt rewards

For retaining employees of high-potential, businesses need to recognize their contributions and reward them with things that are of use to them. A pay hike alone may not be enough to retain such employees in the organization for long. They may appreciate it if the management offers them special skill development programs or gives more freedom in choosing projects matching their skill sets etc. Such special rewards can be given post the accomplishment of certain targets and post a target-exceeding performance by such employees.

Summing it up

The importance of employee retention for businesses is manifold and it makes more sense to focus on retaining employees with high potential. By retaining exceptional performers in the workforce, a company can reduce operational costs, achieve growth, enhance overall productivity and obtain many more benefits. However, for retaining employees of high potential, businesses need to develop suitable strategies. For developing and deploying robust employee retention strategies, seeking the services of ace business management consultancies like PeopleNorth will be prudent. 

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