Losing an employee can have a drastic effect on team morale, and result in a domino effect that leads to poor performance and productivity. Not to mention, it is expensive, and not just because of lost talent. The good news is that only about a quarter of employees that leave do so within their first year. This means you have plenty of time to assess flight risks and address them. , don’t excel at explaining why they do. This is likely because the reasons people quit are deep-rooted and complex. There are 5 reasons why this matter happens, understanding them, and how they impact your team, will help you identify those who are at flight risk, and make changes that may convince them to stay.
Here are 5 Things Leaders Do That Makes Employees Quit :-
Mistake 1: Setting inconsistent goals or expectations.
Consider this scenario: A sales representative at a rental car company has to choose between serving her next client, or correctly logging her previous client’s information into the system. Her manager has made it clear that “slow service is poor service,” but she knows that improperly entering customer information could get her fired. Choosing between these two tasks causes her to experience high levels of stress on a daily basis, and as a consequence, she hates her job.
This situation is not uncommon. But when employees are forced to choose between tasks in order to meet competing expectations, the result is a team of stressed out people without clear priorities.
How can you avoid this situation? Take a note from Disney. Each worker in the Magic Kingdom is given a list of priorities with items ordered from the most to the least important. Safety comes first, followed by courtesy, show (or performance) next, and finally, efficiency. When team members find themselves in sticky situations, no one is confused about how to manage them.
You can create this same kind of stability on your team by being consistent and clear with your expectations. Write them down — even if it is only for yourself — to see if any contradict or overlap. Then, make necessary changes and share. In doing so, you will empower your team and ease their stress by giving them a greater sense of control over their tasks. Most importantly, you will be making work a more pleasant place to be.
Mistake 2: Wasting your resources.
Pretend you are a marketing manager. You have until Friday to roll out a new campaign. It’s Tuesday, which should theoretically leave you with plenty of time. But there’s a problem. You have six meetings for a total of four and a half hours today. The following day, you have seven meetings, which eat up six hours. On Thursday, you have to attend a team training session for five hours. So, when are you supposed to work?
This is what we call resource waste. In the case above, and many others, the resource going to waste is time. Employees who are constantly crunched for time tend to get burned out faster, which impacts the quality of their deliverables. If you don’t give your team the resources they need to succeed, you are setting them up to fail. It’s not uncommon for employees in this situation to leave and seek out a company with a more sustainable work culture.
How can you avoid this situation? Sometimes busy weeks that result in wasted resources are unavoidable. But creating a list that ranks the importance and impact of your employees’ tasks can help. If your employee knows their campaign plan is due Friday, for example, help them itemize the tasks they need to complete by that deadline, and consider if doing so is realistic given their current workload. Before assigning them additional tasks or inviting them to meet after the meeting, ask, “Is this new task a priority? Does this employee really need to be in the room?” If the answer is “no,” give them space to do their most important work.
Mistake 3: Putting people in the wrong roles.
If you ever hear an employee say, “I went to college for this?” you can bet they are not happy with where they are or what they are doing. This is another example of waste, but I call it “knowledge and skills waste.” Unused abilities can leave employees feeling undervalued and faceless. An algorithm can easily take a job posting, outline the skills required for it, then take a resume, and infer the knowledge and abilities of a job candidate. But if there is a disconnect by the time the candidate becomes an employee, you’ve got a risk factor out of the gate.
How can you avoid this situation? It’s best to be transparent about the roles you are hiring for and what they require during the interview process. But if you’re already in too deep, there are a few ways you can handle it. Start by checking the job description your employee was hired into, and compare it against their current task load. Are there gaps, and if so, how wide are they? Take notes. Then discuss them with your team member to see which gaps are falling short of their goals, and which are the most important.
You may not be able to change the role entirely, and it may take time, but together, you can come up with a plan to help them take on more meaningful responsibilities, and drop tasks that add the least value to your team.
Mistake 4: Assigning boring, or overly easy, tasks.
Think about the last time you had to go to a work event that you really didn’t want to attend. Maybe you had to converse with too many people about uninteresting topics or sit through several hour-long seminars in a single day. How did you feel after the fact?
You were likely exhausted, very exhausted — even though all you had to do was talk a little and listen.
Why? Because you were suppressing your emotions. Suppressing, rather than acknowledging, any feeling can take a toll on your energy level, even if that feeling is boredom. If you have an employee with a light workload who constantly takes an excessively long time to finish their tasks, don’t assume they are lazy. Less work is not always easier work. When employees don’t have enough to do, they can lose motivation and experience negative emotions. If they suppress those emotions, they can become physically and emotionally exhausted. The net result is a lack of work satisfaction and engagement, forcing employees to finally ask whether this job is the right fit for them.
How can you avoid this situation? Get creative. If your team member has a history of stable performance, they’ll likely be open to extending their capabilities and taking on more challenging work during their downtime. Before assigning tasks, ask your employee about their interests and passions. Based on their answers, give them work that will enhance their knowledge, skills, or help them grow in the right direction. A learning agenda with target goals, and a roadmap outlining how they will reach them, will also help you keep track of and check in on their progress.
Mistake 5: Leading with bias.
Consumer studies show how much customers value being treated fairly by the companies they give their money to, and the same can be said for workers on the inside, giving up their time. Leaders who are fair — without bias — are leaders who employees can trust, and a trusting manager-employee relationship “defines the best workplaces,” improves performance, and is good for revenue. A lack of trust, however, can result in low morale and a team with little or no guidance. Think of it this way: if your employees don’t trust you to lead them down the right path, how will they come together and align their efforts to meet a shared goal? Put yourself in their shoes. Would you want to work at a place without clear direction?
How can you avoid this situation? Practicing self-awareness is a good start. Managers who can recognize their implicit biases and make adjustments to overcome them are more likely to lead in a fair and just manner. Before you make an important decision consider what is driving you. Are you basing your choices off of evidence, or preference? Have you considered other perspectives? Are there any gaps in your knowledge you need to fill first? Asking for regular feedback from your team, and acting on it, will also build a culture of fairness and open communication.
It’s true that there is no way you can control every aspect of your team’s work experience. If someone wants to leave bad enough, sometimes they just will. That said, focusing on your own behaviors, what you can control, will do wonders to improve the performance and cohesiveness of your team. The better you manage, the more productive, innovative, satisfied, and most importantly, loyal your team will be.