Why Your Best Employees Are Leaving For Your Competition
Employees are by far one of your company’s’ greatest assets. Long-term employees are even more valuable with their vast institutional knowledge and familiarity with the workflow. Hiring a new employee is a costly proposition, setting a company back an average of about $4,000 for every person they have to replace. Unfortunately many companies will find themselves rapidly losing their top performers and not know why.
So why are your best employees leaving?
You might be the problem
Employees often don’t leave a company, they leave a manager. While it may be hard, begin by taking a look at yourself, your managers, and your leadership team and how they interact with their employees. Is there a particular department that is losing more employees than others?
Another way to figure out if the management is the issue is to conduct through exit interviews. By soliciting feedback from departing employees, you gain the opportunity to further audit your process and improve your culture.
Your company vision (or lack thereof) might be the problem
Employees want to work for a company that is going places and has a plan. A cohesive company culture will help bind your staff together and help them feel a part of working towards a common goal. There needs to be buy-in on the part of your employees in order to reinforce commitment, facilitated by an upward business trajectory.
The work might be the problem
Each employee will have a unique set of talents and it is your job to figure out what those are and how to use them. If that employee isn’t challenged and growing they will get bored and look for work elsewhere. Work that is stimulating and engaging will be more likely to keep them around.
Work with your management team to identify their strengths and allocate work that enables that capability. Utilize multi-disciplined teams to tackle projects, delivering greater value to the team and greater engagement for the members.
If there isn’t a career path or future they might not stay
Nothing will send an employee looking for a different job faster than feeling like they have nowhere to go within your company. A career path that is clearly defined, promoting employees from within, will give your employees something to strive for. Besides, if they are your best employees, they are probably the best people for the promotion rather than hiring someone from the outside.
Perhaps they aren’t having fun
Working hard should come with opportunities to play hard as well. This doesn’t just mean recreational options like ping pong in the break room or Friday catered lunches (although those certainly help).
Allowing your employees more flexibility in their work schedules, the ability to work from home, and giving them more autonomy during the work day can all increase the level of enjoyment your employees experience on a day to day basis. Find ways to create downtime that allow your employees to spend time together, such as renting out the local skating rink or hosting a picnic.
If you don’t care, they don’t care
Lastly, employees may leave because you don’t care about them. There needs to be a certain degree of empathy for what is going on in their lives. Simply listening to them will go a long way, helping them feel that their concerns and trials are not seen as inconveniences. Be sure to let them know you are open and available for questions and comments about the office, and then upon their feedback so that they can see your consideration in action.
Turnover helps no one, least of all your workforce. By identifying what lead your employees to depart, your organization can better craft a nurturing, developmental culture that will improve both your productivity and products in the process.