multicultural team of young business people isolated on white background

In an increasingly competitive business world, there has been a renewed concentration and emphasis placed on not only customer retention, but employee retention as well.  Keeping current employees is much more economically feasible than going through the lengthy and often complex process of hiring and training new employees.  That said, it’s more important than ever to understand who you have working for you, and employees can be seen to fit in one of four different employee profiles.

The Go Getter:

Your job as a manager would be much easier if you had an entire staff of these employee’s.  Unfortunately, statistically these dream employees make up only about 20% of any office staff.  You will recognize these types, as punctuality is extremely important to them.  They take pride in their productivity, and quality of work, and want to get ahead, but can burn out quickly.   They typically need variety in their work and opportunities for advancement, to avoid this burn out.

The Negative Nelly: 

This type of employee can single handedly put an entire office into a bad mood in a very short period of time—they are the “glass is half” empty type, who invariably will point out the problems or deficiencies in an organizations policies or benefits package.  These individuals are never top performers, but do just enough to get by and avoid termination.  Exercising patience and listening to this employee, combined with an attempt to help them see how their specific talent set can fit into the organization, is the best hope of turning them around.

The Egocentric:

This employee will often exceed expectations, but does not work well with others.  Their focus is always on themselves in order to achieve their own goals and objectives, and can manifest as a lack of respect for their colleagues or even their supervisors.  The best hope in leveraging the egocentrics talents is to point out how they are one vital component of a team of individuals who have the common goal of the success of that team.  Emphasizing the mutual respect of all team members can work to turn the respect issues around.

The Nine to Fiver:

This employee does there job to a satisfactory level, but has no desire to go any further.  They are content simply to come in and do their job, go home, and collect a paycheck.  Engaging these individuals can be difficult, but accomplished over time by pointing out the overall goals of the team or organization, and showing how they fit into that big picture.

By learning to identify the different employee profiles, an organization can better work to leverage them toward the goal of higher company retention, by focusing on their individual motivating factors.

David Klein is a leading Executive IT Recruiter & Headhunter with over 15 years industry experience.  As Manager of Recruitment Strategy for KDS Staffing, Inc., he has achieved industry-leading success. David has successfully led, trained and introduced many in the art of Executive Recruitment and Headhunting. If you or your organization would like to discuss hiring needs, contact David at 646-650-2833 or