Many companies are squandering an opportunity to retain talent by never discussing employees’ career prospects with them, according to Robert Half.

In a survey of more than 1,200 U.S. finance and accounting professionals, 37% told the staffing specialist they would like to discuss their career paths at least quarterly; another 45% want to review their options annually.

But 40% of the respondents said their managers never discuss their career paths with them, while only 11% said they have quarterly discussions.

“Supervisors who are not discussing career progression with their staff are missing an opportunity to engage and retain their team,” Paul McDonald, senior executive director for Robert Half, said in a news release. “Employees who don’t know when they’ll earn a promotion or raise, or understand how they fit into a company’s long-term strategy, aren’t likely to stick around long.”

According to Robert Half, managers conducting career path discussions should follow these tips:

 Ask employees about their objectives. Not all employees want to travel a linear path to the top  some may want experience in other parts of the organization. Managers should first determine employees’ aspirations before mapping out their individual paths.

 Be upfront about expectations. Employees need to know upfront the types of experience or skills needed to reach their goals. Managers should then work with them to develop specific plans, which should include leadership development, mentoring and training opportunities.

 Don’t wait for the annual performance review. Managers should periodically check in with their employees to discuss their progress or where they need to make improvements to progress within the organization.

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