Retention Deep Dive: Culture

High turnover rates are often driven by various factors within an organization. Culture issues are often placed towards the top of the list of reasons to leave an employer. If fact, a Deloitte study revealed “82 percent of respondents said that culture is a potential competitive advantage. However, only 28 percent of survey respondents believe they understood their culture well, and only 19 percent believe they had the ‘right culture.’”

While serving as interim CHRO at a $300M manufacturing company, a Beckway operator noted how the company’s current culture was significantly and negatively affecting turnover. Some challenges included low new hire engagement, a challenged sense of trust caused by leadership gaps and instability, and the loss of real connection opportunities due to people stretching themselves to cover for staffing holes.

To help improve the culture of the company, our HR executive focused on increasing worker engagement, building trust and real connections, communicating a higher unifying purpose, and encouraging collaboration and communication within the company. The actions included:


  • Providing new hires a longer onboarding period with regular check-ins and a more robust training schedule
  • Holding retention interviews to gain worker feedback & insight and then acting on the findings
  • Implementing a formal funded recognition program to celebrate above and beyond performance
  • Holding town halls to provide clear communication of company goals & objectives
  • Hosting weekly plant lunches, including leadership, to foster communication and building real connections between employees and leaders
  • Uncovering and resuming workplace traditions to create a sense of comradery within the company


Since implementing the above changes, all key positions have been filled and turnover has been reduced significantly. The company is also seeing a better caliber of candidates applying and a palpable improvement in the buzz around the company.

For more information contact Keith Swenson at

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