It takes a lot to find a good hire, coach and train them to become the professional, only to see them leave. And the cost of filling up for the employee is huge. The Center for American Progress reported that losing an employee can cost anywhere from 16% of the person’s salary for hourly, unsalaried employees, to 213% of the salary for a highly trained position!
Organizations tend to put the blame of high employee turnover on everything under the sun, usually failing to actually realize the real issue – employee satisfaction. Keeping employees happy and satisfied is the core to retaining them for longer.
Here are the things organizations are doing wrong that makes employees leave:
1. Hiring the wrong people
According to Gallup, when people are a natural fit for their role and assigned to do what they do best, an opportunity for achieving excellent performance gets created. While hiring, managers need to ask the question over and over again – Is this the right person for this job? When employees are a natural fit, their dedication to their work will be higher than when they are left to do something they have no interest in, or worst, something they despise.
Organizations need to hire the right talent, spend time in choosing the best out of the sea of applications and not be desperate. Once the right talent is hired, engagement needs to happen continuously. For managers, it is much easier and effective to engage employees who are a natural fit for their roles.
2. Not recognizing top employees
According to Tiny Pulse Employee Engagement Survey 2017, only 26% of employees feel strongly valued at work, which is lower than 2016. Employees are not receiving the recognition they expect.
Two most basic human desires are validation and recognition. If a person is working hard, they want someone they look up to or admire to witness their journey. If people toil hard to achieve something, they would want to be noticed and applauded for their efforts. If organizations do not recognize and reward their top employees for long periods of time, they are bound to feel burned out in exchange for nothing. Even a small “Thank you” can go a long way. Rewards and recognition play a crucial part in ensuring higher levels of employee engagement.
3. Not communicating enough with employees
This probably is one of the biggest reasons why people leave organizations. When they feel like they don’t matter enough to be informed about what is going on or how they are doing. Professional development is something every employee desires. When managers do not communicate about future strategies or offer mentoring when needed, employees run out of reasons to stick with the company.
Regular one-on-ones are important and they need to be treated like a responsibility, rather than a weekly task that needs to be ticked off the list. Everyone is hard pressed for time, but through such initiatives, employee engagement indices can actually take a positive spin.
There should be avenues for facilitating open conversations between managers and employees. Both the parties need to know the agenda of the meeting, and the manager in particular needs to be well prepared with the set of questions. It is critical that managers make the most of these interactions, as they will play a crucial role in understanding what the employee is experiencing in the company.
4.Making employees overwork
There is a direct relationship between work-life balance and employee engagement. The Corporate Executive Board which represents 80% of the Fortune 500 companies, found that employees who believe that they have good work-life balance work 21% harder than those who don’t. The negative effect of a work-life conflict leads to a reduced effort at work, lower performance and increased absenteeism and turnover (Anderson, Coffey, Byerly, 2002), reduced health and energy (Frone, Rusee, Barned, 1996), and increased stress and burnout (Anderson et al, 2002).
A disrupted or topsy-turvy work-life balance is going to wreck employee productivity. It is important for mental peace which automatically translates into contentment both at home and at work. Finding this balance is a challenge because increasing workload and too many goals make it difficult to make clear demarcations on where one thing stops and the other begins. Besides, there is no one way of doing this. Every job demands are different and the way one person might want to balance will be different from another. However, it shouldn’t be ignored by organizations and efforts should be made to help employees achieve this.
People who feel they have more control over their work life are more engaged. The feeling of having greater flexibility in how they organize and perform their tasks or take care of their personal lives makes them focused. This is because they do not feel like being all over the place. It enables them to devote their full attention to one aspect of their lives at a time, be it personal or professional. Work-life balance programs can pave the way for making more and more employees feel at ease. When organizations make employees feel like they matter, employees are bound to reciprocate by being more dedicated and productive.
5. No genuine care for employees
Great bosses make their employees feel special. They have a genuine and honest interest in making their lives better. If managers do not care about their subordinates and perform managerial tasks just for the sake of ticking it off a box, employees are going to feel demotivated. Having an authentic and unadulterated interest in the growth of an employee is necessary.
A good example is that of feedback sessions. Most feedback sessions end up being a one-way street with the receiver only listening to the manager talking. This is not a good situation to be in. Engage your employee and have a conversation, rather than going into speech mode. For example, if the employee dropped the ball, ask him what he thinks of the situation and why it happened and how he feels about it. It is very important to make the employee feel safe and comfortable. Once you build the rapport, you have to listen attentively and then communicate accordingly.
6. Not setting clear goals for employees
Goal management is an extremely crucial part of performance management. Without clear goals, employees will be left confused and directionless. And just laying down goals is not the answer. Managers also need to be available for their employees as and when the need arises. Be it providing learning tools for employees, coaching them on real issues, recognizing and rewarding employee performance in formal and informal ways or offering genuine feedback on activities. Only when managers define all these strategies clearly can they help contribute to achieving organizational goals.
This need not be very hard. Even if managers can spend 15 minutes from time to time with their employees and focus on specific goals that need to be achieved by each one of them, it can go a long way. The mission and vision of larger organizational goals need to be clearly communicated to the employees. Along with this, employees need the regular dose of how their contribution can make a massive impact on achieving those higher goals. Conversations hence need to be team and company-centric, rather than individual centric.
Thoughts, comments or views? Do let us know in the comments section if any.