Why Employees Quit Their Job


Employee turnover is outrageously expensive. For entry level employees it can be as much as half their annual salary. For executives, it can be 3 to 4 times their annual salary.  I have done a lot of informal research over the years on why employees quit their jobs. As a turn-around specialist, the first thing I do when taking on a client is to talk to the team. I even do informal exit interviews when possible.

Here is what I have learned: the number 1 reason employees usually give for leaving a company is money. The other thing I learned is that is a lie.
The following list is a compilation of both my personal experience and a number of surveys that I have read from various sources.

Here we go! The top reasons your employees quit:

  1. YOU. They don’t like the way you treat them and simply want to work for someone else.
  2. Not recognizing and appreciating their talents and strengths. (i.e. Being shoved into a position to fill a need, even if they are not gifted in those skills).
  3. Poor communication with the team. Nothing is worse than feeling like you are being left in the dark.
  4. YOU DON’T LISTEN! The single greatest strength of a leader is to listen well. Most of us are great at talking, but we suck at listening. Don’t believe me?? Just ask my wife…..
  5. Micromanaging. Most people will rise to the occasion if you tell them the outcome you want. What they hate, is being told the outcome and then being given the exact steps they have to take to get there. Your way may not be the best way for them. 
  6. EGOS!!! “I’m the Boss! I am in charge! You do what I say!” (As Charlie Brown would say…. “Good Grief”.
  7. You are not available for open, honest, good conversations.
  8. No Mentoring. Especially if I am young or new in my position, I need someone to help me learn.
  9. MONEY. Okay, there it is. Reason number 9. But I ask you to consider this: If all the other needs were met, money might not be a deal breaker.

I have a client that does a lot of things right. One day, he had an employee come to him and give notice. Another company offered her $1.00/hour more for the same work. He wished her well and she took the new job.

About 6 weeks later, she called him and asked if he would take her back in her former position. He would have gladly taken her back, but the position had been filled. While her new job paid more, the mentoring, caring and support were not there. She realized she had made a mistake. The money was better, but her quality of life suffered.

Most companies say that people are their greatest asset, but they don’t really mean it. I have always been amazed at how we care for our machinery, buildings, air conditioning systems and financial statements, but neglect our people.
If the A/C breaks down in July, you can darn well bet that there is a repairman on site in short order to fix it. But if our people start to break down, we tend to ignore it and hope they will fix themselves.

Take care of reasons 1-8 above and you won’t have to worry so much about number 9 (as long as you are paying a fare wage in the market). You will also save major bucks on recruiting, since turnover will be at a minimum.


Source: Craig’s Blog


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