What’s the best way to retain employees?

Sam Altman (President at Y Combinator)
Employee Retention – Sam Altman

A great work environment. This consists of two things–cultural values and team

Sam Altman (President at Y Combinator)
Employee Retention – Sam Altman

If employees work at your company because they believe in the importance of the mission, they are unlikely to be tempted by more money elsewhere. Find a way to give everyone new challenges all the time.

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
Parental Leave – AVC

Each company needs to decide when and how they can consider such a parental leave policy. But for those that have the scale to consider this approach, I am strongly in favor of it and share Chad’s belief that what is good for employees and their families is good for business.

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
Path Forward – AVC

Our portfolio company Return Path built a “returnship” program a few years ago to help stay at home moms and other men and women who have left the work force to take care of children, sick parents, etc figure out how to get back into the workforce.

Ben Horowitz (Co-Founder & Partner @ Andreessen Horowitz)
Why Startups Should Train Their People – Ben’s Blog

After putting economics, aside, I found that there were two primary reasons why people quit: 1) They hated their manager – generally the employees were appalled by the lack of guidance, career development and feedback they were receiving. 2) They weren’t learning anything – the company wasn’t investing in the employees.

Patty McCord (Chief Talent Officer at Netflix)
How Netflix Reinvented HR

The best thing you can do for employees—a perk better than foosball or free sushi—is hire only “A” players to work alongside them. Excellent colleagues trump everything else.

Jeff Bezos (Founder & CEO of Amazon)
EX-99.1

Pay to Quit is pretty simple. Once a year, we offer to pay our associates to quit. The first year the offer is made, it’s for $2,000. Then it goes up one thousand dollars a year until it reaches $5,000. The headline on the offer is “Please Don’t Take This Offer. ” We hope they don’t take the offer; we want them to stay. The goal is to encourage folks to take a moment and think about what they really want. In the long-run, an employee staying some… (read more)

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
Access Code – AVC

Providing coding training to underserved adults who can fill tech jobs, as Access Code is doing, is another part of the talent equation that can make significant immediate impact. If you feel like you can support this effort with your time or your money or by hiring Access Code graduates or by teaching a class, please do so.

David Jackson (Founder, Seeking Alpha)
The two factors which determine how successful and happy you will be at work | A Founder’s Notebook

Only two things matter for individuals: Do you get to do what you are best at / love doing every day? Are you in a company where growth and success will spawn opportunities for you?

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
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You need to take your employee base and categorize them as A’s, B’s and C’s. Any goodwill is already lost if they come to you and ask you for something. The golden rule of keeping employees happy is unexpected increases in compensation, role, or even just recognition.

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
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Often the amount of equity increases you can give isn’t going to have a profound impact. If you wait to give it at annual review time you’ve already lost the upper hand in terms of controlling the emotion.

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
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If you’re short on cash, the obvious place to increase people is equity. Another motivator is when you give people people gifts or experiences that are unexpected. For example, dinner for four at a top restaurant.

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
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If someone’s told you they want to break up with you, you’ve probably already missed out. Never roll out your red carpet when the employees on the way out the door. The key is to get ahead of it before you’ve missed out.

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
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Another easy give is title. I know people are afraid of title inflation. Suprisingly people can get motivated by increases in responsibility or if you publicly praise them infront of others.

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
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Another easy win frankly is taking them out to dinner and telling them how important they are to you. Invite their partner, boyfriend/girlfriend, spouse and make it a social dinner.

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
MBA Mondays: Retaining Your Employees – AVC

There isn’t one secret method to retain employees but there are a few things that make a big difference.
1) Communication – the single greatest contributor to low morale is lack of communication. 2) Getting the hiring process right – a lot of churn results from bad hiring. 3) Culture and Fit – Employees leave because they don’t feel like they fit in. 4) Promote from within. Create a career path for your most talented people. The best people are… (read more)

Bart Lorang (Founder & CEO of FullContact)
Paid Vacation? Not Cool. You Know What’s Cool? Paid, PAID Vacation

Once per year, we give each employee $7500 to go on vacation. There are a few rules: You have to go on vacation, or you don’t get the money. You must disconnect. You can’t work while on vacation.

Maura Thomas (Award-winning speaker, trainer, author)
Your Late-Night Emails Are Hurting Your Team

Being “always on” hurts results. When employees are constantly monitoring their email after work hours — whether this is due to a fear of missing something from you, or because they are addicted to their devices — they are missing out on essential down time that brains need. Refrain from after-hours communication. Discourage an always-on environment of distraction that inhibits creative flow.