Why Do Employees Leave?
Staff turnover is inevitable and to some point we will want to achieve what we identify as “healthy” staff turnover to avoid our organisation becoming stale and unresponsive to external, and internal, changes.
The problem is though that very often it is the most valuable and flexible members of staff that leave us creating disruption and replacement problems. People leaving are costly and threaten our performance and plans for growth.
A common saying is that staff leave due to the actions and behaviours of their manager, not the organisation itself: the points outlined below might be a sobering wake-up call for some of us!
Many of the reasons why people leave can be avoided with a different perspective on issues.
- Staff are overworked
Overwork = burnout. It is that simple and staff will always be looking for an exit when they just have too much to do. The clear message here is theta good performance is rewarded by more punishment through greater expectations and output needed. The way to make this work is to increase the status of your key team members if you are expecting more from them than from before. This need not necessarily be through a larger salary but can be achieved effectively through title-changes and basic perks that identify, and reward, high performers.
- Good work goes unrecognised.
Simple measures including verbal praise, thanks for a job well-done and the proverbial pat on the back are excellent ways to motivate the team – and make sure they are not always looking for the exit. Find out what it is exactly that motivates your team members and be mindful of this all the time, celebrate successes and support those who are really finding things tough! Showing that you care and understand always motivates staff.
- Not keeping your promises
Making promises to people is fine BUT only if you keep your promises. Upholding and delivering on a commitment shows that you are trustworthy and that you have qualities that will endear you to your staff. places you on the fine line that lies between making them very happy and watching them walk out the door. When you fail you deliver this generates concern, stress and staff begin to wonder if the medium term is just not worth considering in favour of a departure in the short term. If you cannot, or will not, deliver on your promises, why should anyone else?
4. Making POOR decisions about recruitment and promotion
Dedicated staff expect to work alongside colleagues who have a similar mind-frame to themselves. Nothing destroys this like poor recruitment processes where inferior and less-committed staff appear. Couples to this is the far worse practice of promoting staff who are not of the right quality when far better candidates are ignored or not given a fair chance of career development. This is a clear driver for encouraging people to leave!
- Passion and interest is ignored
Talented employees care and are committed to their work. If their manager can latch onto this and give them the chance to further develop this interest than their level of job satisfaction will increase dramatically. They are also far less likely to want to leave ad take that passion elsewhere.
- Not investing in the development of skills
It is the job of the manager to be constantly pushing the skills of their staff and actively pay attention to what their staff are doing, how well they are doing it and in giving new opportunities to develop that skills base. Talented employees MUST always be pushed to take on mew work, new opportunity and new responsibility to allow them to fully grow into the work of the organisation. And employee who is bored and unchallenged will leave.
- Not encouraging creativity
The staff who work with the day to day tasks of the organisation will be the very people who have the very best creative ideas on how to improve things. So why are you not constantly asking them for their ideas? Creative people like to get involved in what the organisation is dong – either that or they leave!
- No intellectual challenge
Staff like to be challenged to push the boundaries and to move away from the more mundane and normal duties the job offers, supported by managers who help things move forward and achieve new levels of output. If the job is boring and offers no real scope for change or development, staff will leave.
Retaining your key staff involves thinking very carefully about how they are treated and making sure that they want to work for you. If they do not just watch your staff retention key performance indicators, and profits, tumble.
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