Employee turnover is a perennial problem for companies operating within any industry. It can often be a particularly frustrating issue for employers because it is far from clear what the causes are that are leading employees to jump ship and look for opportunities elsewhere. While there are undoubtedly idiosyncrasies regarding each employee’s decision to leave a particular company, there are some common themes which can observe – and lessons that can be learned – about how and why companies lose talent.
Here are three common reasons that employees leave a job, and solutions that employers can implement, which will make them want to stay.
● Lack of a Clearly Defined Purpose or Mission: According to a recent study published in the Harvard Business Review, 9 out of 10 professionals “are willing to trade a percentage of their lifetime earnings for greater meaning at work.” The implications of that statistic and its relationship to employee turnover are enormous: employees are willing to pursue a position with less pay if it comes along with a greater sense of meaning or purpose. With this in mind, we as employers need to ask ourselves some important questions, such as:
○ How clearly defined is our company’s mission statement?
○ How well does our employee branding communicate our values and purpose?
○ Do our employees understand how they contribute to making our company’s collective mission a reality or do we need to create a more effective dialogue with them?
● Overwhelming Workload: The demands of the modern workplace can be enormous, both for team leaders and for the employees that they manage. The trick here, then, is for managers to delegate tasks deftly enough to keep each of their team members engaged while simultaneously ensuring that no one is overworked. Unfortunately, this is a fairly uncommon skill, because 23% of employees feel burned out all the time at work and an additional 44% feel burned out occasionally, as reported in a recent Gallup poll.
If your company is losing employees as a result of their burnout on the job, it’s time to assemble your team leaders to re-strategize how your tasks are delegated. As a general rule, each employee should be tasked with enough work that they remain challenged and engaged, but no one should consistently be forced to work exhausting hours or meet unreasonable deadlines.
● Toxic Workplace Culture: Office environments that aren’t conducive to individual employee success, fruitful professional relationships, or relaxed camaraderie are virtually guaranteed to be unable to hold on to talented employees for long. If you’re noticing high rates of employee turnover, it might be time to take careful stock of your company’s workplace culture. The quickest and most effective way of gauging the health of your workplace culture is to start a conversation with people at every level and to listen. Are there basic needs met? Do they feel comfortable coming into work every day? Do they feel that they have access to opportunities for growth and advancement? Change can only happen through dialogues such as these.
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