[YS Learn] The one secret to retaining talented employees

Several incentives can be used to retain employees, but the most important is providing learning and upskilling opportunities.

The first 100 people that Zerodha hired since its genesis in 2010 are still part of the bootstrapped startup after 10 years, says Nithin Kamath, Co-founder and CEO of Zerodha.

“Right now if someone from the core team calls me and asks me for help, I will do anything for them,” Nithin said in a Masterclass with Shradha Sharma, Founder and CEO of YourStory Media.

Retaining great talent is imperative, especially for up-and-coming organisations, and is essentially what will make or break the company in the long run. That job is becoming increasingly difficult though, mostly because employers fail to gauge what their employees really want.

Nithin Kamath, Co-founder and CEO, Zerodha

In a survey conducted by LinkedIn to answer that question, 94 percent of respondents said they would stay longer in a company if it invested in helping them learn. The report added that the interest in learning and development was particularly strong among 25 to 35-year-olds.

Learning and growth, therefore, essentially go hand in hand. Nithin says he has harnessed the power of that tool well:

“The amount of effort I take towards educating our customers, I do for the team as well. I am consistently pushing people to learn more, and do everything to aid and improve their learning. Whatever it is that I have done accidentally right in building this business, the thing I am most proud of is our people,” he said. 

He credits the 30 people in Zerodha’s tech team – called ‘X-men’ – with powering the platform and taking it to new heights.

“All of us still work as if it were the very first day of the business,” Nithin said.

“People always matter the most in any organisation. They build the product, and they take it to scale. Invest in them, especially in times of crisis. We are providing people with ESOP buybacks, and loans with no interest, knowing that they will need it. But more importantly, we are there for them,” he added. 

The people’s manifesto written in the book Trillion Dollar Coach says: "Support means giving people the tools, information, training, and coaching they need to succeed.It means continuous effort to develop people’s skills. Great managers help people excel and grow".  
Edited by Aparajita Saxena


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