Good managers know very well how expensive employee turnover can be and work diligently to keep those costs at a minimum. It is a fact that not every employee can be retained no matter how fairly they are treated, and some are actually welcome to leave.
Below are the top ten reasons for employee resignations, along with suggestions for retaining those valuable players that are hard or impossible to replace:
- Employees Feel Underappreciated. Those who leave for this reason aren’t looking for a pat on the back every time they show up for work on time or finish a task. They simply need to be reminded from time to time that their contributions are a value to the team. Ignore them for too long, and they will seek that appreciation elsewhere.
- A Lack of Proper Compensation. This is a common reason for resignation and should be addressed even if the company feels it is being fair. It is no secret that companies that are the most generous in this arena are also some of the most successful.
- Insufficient Time Off. In an attempt to do more with less, some employers are saddling their employees with additional workloads to compensate for a leaner staff. Initially, this approach may result in a healthier bottom-line, but ultimately it will lead to higher turnover cost and lower production as workers begin to tire of the rigorous schedule forced on them.
- Change In Management. Companies that fail to recognize the impact of this decision risk losing valuable personnel. Taking the time to speak with those most affected is of the utmost importance for keeping morale up and the transition smooth.
- Outdated Machinery and Equipment. Whether it’s warehouse equipment or the office phone system, tools that make life more difficult for those that use them play a major role in employees running for the exit. Continuing to replace these workers may prove more expensive than replacing the tools over the long run.
- Unrealistic Goals. Setting goals and quotas is important for maintaining production levels and achieving maximum results. This is true in all aspects of life be it personal or business. Constantly moving the “carrot” without regard for what it takes to reach it will usually wind up in a breakdown in morale and desire. Employees who are consistently put to the test in this manner will eventually decide it is simply not worth it.
- Lack of Management Support. Managers who are unwilling to back up those who depend upon them will find it difficult to maintain a staff. Employees will be resigning left and right. This doesn’t mean being the “dumping ground” for every grievance, but it does mean having a certain intestinal fortitude as it concerns righting legitimate wrongs–even when it involves putting those issues above your own career goals. This is how you become a respected leader.
- The Need to Be Challenged. If school-aged children get bored with their studies, their minds wander and their grades drop. When working adults get bored with their jobs, their minds wander and they start seeking a more challenging position. Keeping a bright employee challenged with rewarding tasks is the best way to keep a bright employee, period.
- Lack of a Joyful Environment. Look around your place of business. Do your employees seem happy to be there? Is there a certain positive energy among your staff that seems to reverberate from department to department? If not, why not? Work places needn’t be all drudgery, and those that are have bigger problems than the frowns that everyone is wearing. This doesn’t mean it needs to be a constant party atmosphere. But it should at least be pleasant.
- Lack of a Clear Pathway to Success. Many times an employee will become frustrated with the inability or unwillingness of management to provide them with a working model for success with the firm. This is another common and valid reason for resignation. Most people will not set out on a journey without some idea of the direction they are headed. And if they get lost along the way, they will generally head in another direction. Good and attentive management will take the time to nurture those with an eye on the future and see their value from a long-range perspective.
Companies spend a lot of time, energy and money to hire the right people. All of these resources are wasted if they can’t keep the people they’ve invested so much in already.