Why Great Employees Quit

Why Do Great Employees Quit?

In 2018, a study from Mercer revealed something shocking about U.S. workers — one-third of the employed population planned to leave their jobs in the 12 months post-survey. Now, you might be dealing with that wave of planned departures. In losing a valuable staffer to another company or industry, you might find yourself wondering, “Why do great employees quit?”

Of course, everyone has different reasons for saying goodbye to a particular job or career path. But these are the most common reasons why people quit, information that could be valuable for employers who want their team to stick around:

1.No Prospective Progression

  • Another reason team members leave is because they see no chance of progression or promotion at their current gig.
  • Most staffers want to feel as though what they do now will help them in the long run. They seek out new skills, training and education that makes them even better at their job. Plus, they can use such improvements as a resume booster.
  • To that end, some employees won’t stick around if they can’t see any potential for a promotion. This goes hand-in-hand with the desire for training. People want to know that their hard work will pay off and that they’ll have something to show for it all. Without the possibility of obtaining a higher-ranking job, they will start to look elsewhere.

2. Bosses With Little Faith

Today’s worker does not want to be micromanaged and that’s putting it lightly. Therefore, an untrusting boss can easily push staffers to walk away. A manager can show they don’t have faith in their staff by questioning their judgment or requiring that team members run every decision by them first.

This type of treatment leaves employees feeling understandably stressed out and, as such, many will walk away when they’re treated this way.

One of many employee retention solutions to this issue is to give employees the freedom to manage their own schedules. At the very least, this allows employees to have autonomy over their own success.

3. Perceived Lack of Support

Without a champion in their corner, many great employees will take their talents elsewhere. No one wants to feel like just another brick in the wall, especially not when they’re working hard.

Any business should, therefore, treat employees, interns and even volunteers with the respect and appreciation that they deserve. Staffers are less likely to leave if they have access to resources, a fair wage and basic benefits like healthcare and vacation time.

Understanding why great employees quit is just one piece of the puzzle. Once you’ve pinpointed why some of your best staffers have walked away, it’s up to you to improve in that area.

4. Bland Company Culture

Sitting under fluorescent lighting every day, toiling in a cubicle, barely chatting with colleagues… such a work environment can be unstimulating, to say the least. At its worst, though, a boring or uninspiring work environment can be the impetus for someone to seek a new job.

Company culture encompasses more than just the work environment, although a cookie-cutter office space won’t do anything to keep someone on staff. Employees want to know that they’re working towards a greater good — millennials, for one, seek out jobs with mission-driven companies.

Sometimes, without a clear mission statement or obvious give-back scheme, workers won’t have any desire to contribute to the organization anymore. Employers will be more likely to keep an employee if their work environment is an interesting and inviting one.

5. No “Thank You”

Sometimes, all it takes is a little bit of gratitude to keep someone around. If someone’s working hard, their boss(es) should make a point to highlight such a contribution.

At the very least, a mention at a meeting or in a team newsletter could do the trick. Perhaps a quarterly award could further incentivise staffers — the prospect of a raise always sweetens the deal.

Without any sort of acknowledgment, though, staffers start to feel as though their work goes unnoticed and underappreciated, even if it is valuable to the team. Managers and bosses should make a point to laud their staffers in order to keep them around for longer.

6. Stress

Finally, and perhaps most commonly, hard-working employees pick up more and more responsibilities as they gain stature. The only problem is that with such great responsibility comes stringent expectations — all eyes will be on the top-performing player on the team. As such, great staffers will feel more stress than their colleagues.

Eventually, when that pressure becomes unbearable, they look for opportunities elsewhere. The promise of working for a less demanding business can be enough to entice someone who performs well and receives recognition in their current role, too. So, businesses and bosses should be reasonable with their expectations so that employees aren’t overwhelmed and disenchanted with their jobs over time.

Keep Them Around

Understanding why great employees quit is just one piece of the puzzle. Once you’ve pinpointed why some of your best staffers have walked away, it’s up to you to improve in that area.

Whether it means shelling out awards, offering staffers promotions or removing some of their stressful responsibilities, the effort will be worth it. You’ll keep your best team members around for longer, making both of you happier in the long run.

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Photo by Rene Asmussen from Pexels

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