Take a good, long look around your company, specifically at your employees. Fifty-one percent of them are currently looking to leave their jobs, according to a 2017 Gallup poll.

What’s worse is that 46 percent of employees answering an ADP survey say they would even consider taking a new job that matched their current salary or even paid less. In a BusinessSolver survey, it gets worse: 80 percent of employees say they would work more hours and 60 percent would take a pay cut to work for a more empathetic employer.

Not to rub salt in the wound, but 26 percent of the U.S. workforce that says they are going to change jobs this year are the most highly skilled and motivated people you’ve got.

What’s the problem? Workers today want more, according to a Forbes report, which says, “They want something different. They are demanding, they want meaningful work, and they expect their employers to make work more rewarding in many ways. Today, employees don’t want a career; they want an experience.”

And statistics prove it. Nearly 40 percent of the U.S. workforce now works part time. Millennials want more creative jobs and they want to work for startups. And all types of employees say they want work to be easier, less punishing and more meaningful, the Forbes report says.

Retention is clearly the No. 1 strategy for combating this loss of half your workforce. But what do employees want?

According to an Aflac study, the top five reasons employees say they like working for small businesses are:

  • 27 percent — Flexible scheduling
  • 23 percent — Seeing the fruits of their labor
  • 17 percent — Feeling that their input matters
  • 14 percent — Being rewarded for hard work
  • 9 percent — Getting noticed by people who matter.

Forbes research also states there are five elements that drive a highly engaged workforce:

  • The work itself
  • The management environment
  • The flexibility and inclusion of the workplace
  • People’s ability to learn and grow
  • Trust and meaning from leadership.

The best places to work clearly are more than just cool office spaces. They have what some experts call a “soul” that makes work exciting and energizing. They invest in good management, and they train and develop their people. They define their business in a way that brings purpose to the organization. And, they offer their employees flexibility so they can thrive.

What keeps your employees motivated and engaged?