Hand writing smiley face on a cartoon figure. employee retention. customer retention.

The year is only a month old, yet a number of companies in the jan/san industry are likely already questioning whether they can fulfill one of their biggest resolutions: to improve retention.

Thankfully, there's plenty of time left in the year for companies to make the changes necessary to keep employees from leaving. To do this, an opinion piece in Entrepreneur suggests businesses try these four steps:

1. Increase Employee-to-Employee Engagement

Richard Trevino II suggests that businesses begin holding “get connected” events — activities he says encourages employees to continually share something new about themselves with their coworkers. The facts being shared don't have to be related to work, but it doesn't hurt if they are. All that really matters is that employees get to know more about each other.

2. Encourage mentorship

Some employees don't get much direction at all from the moment they start their job to the moment they quit. To help workers gain a greater sense of direction, Trevino suggests companies develop program where veteran employees show new workers the ropes. Trevino says employee mentorship also has a secondary benefit of helping the new and veteran employee to know each other.

3. Create fun competition

Businesses can further motivate employees by creating competitive team-building activities. Trevino suggests promoting goals that employees will strive for. These goals can be accomplished individually or as a team, with the winners getting bragging rights.

4. Support charity

Businesses who encourage employee involvement in charities and community initiatives are not only contributing to a great cause, but they're also showing workers that their employer cares about the communities in which they operate. Group volunteerism can also help employees to bond with one another, creating a more enjoyable work environment.