Staff tenure in South Africa and institutional memory

Emulation and Innovation

Career Junction recently reported that staff retention in an organisation depends on the age of that person.  It noted that baby boomers (age 58 to 77) tend to stay in a job for seven years.  The length of time in a job tends to decrease in age groups with the most productive age group between 28 to 42 staying in a job for only 2 and half years on average.    The report also notes that executive and senior managers stay in their positions for four years.

This job fluidity has a huge impact on institutional memory.  A corporate entity whether that be private or public relies on a consist level of stability in performance to run optimally.  The best way to ensure this level of service is to retain the institutional memory in an organisation.  Training plays a vital role in this process.  Sending people on courses related to their jobs is an important component of this, but it doesn’t do much to retain corporate memory. 

In our experience the most effective method of ensuring corporate continuity is through a series of internal internships, known as INTRATERNSHIPS.  These Intraternships encourage staff to exchange information through a series of seminars.  They go much deeper than that, the trainers are encouraged to pass on information and receive information that might lead to innovations that could lead to operational efficiencies resulting in streamlining the business.

Trainers are taught to deliver these seminars to both their co-workers and executive and senior managers.  Each person on this programme is regarded as an intern.  After 12 months of seminars and idea sharing each person, irrespective of position in the company receives a certificate of INTRATERNSHIP.  This certificate becomes a negotiation tool for promotion or for future employment.

Over the next few months we will breakdown each concept in detail.

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