Staff retention can be a tricky business. The grass is always greener and as the economy picks up and the number of vacancies rise, it can be difficult to stop the eyes of your employees wandering. As this is a common problem you might not have too much trouble replacing those that do leave however whilst introducing one or two team members might not be too hard, having to do it again and again ends up being incredibly time consuming, impractical and expensive.
So how do you stop your staff looking elsewhere?
In order to get staff to stay it’s important to understand why they would want to leave in the first place. There are a host of reasons why an employee might want to leave the organisation they’re in, some are completely beyond the control of the employer however some are easily addressed.
Show me the money!
The most obvious of the list and requires the least explanation. If someone has the opportunity to make more money elsewhere they may well go and do that.
Onwards and Upwards
The more ambitious out there will want to know that there are clear opportunities for progression, or at least that there will be down the line. If they feel that they have hit a glass ceiling then they will start looking elsewhere.
Where’s the challenge?
It is natural to want to be challenged in your work, most of us would get incredibly bored if we weren’t. If someone is in the same job for too long, doing the same thing over and over again then the challenge will undoubtedly disappear. At this point many will look for opportunities to leave the monotony behind.
Can’t we just be friends?
Many people treasure the relationships that they have with their colleagues and these relationships make their working life so much better. Unfortunately not everyone is as lucky and in these cases bad working relationships can make their days a nightmare. There’s only so much that people will put up with and they may well decide that no job is worth having to put up with a certain individual.
Let’s keep it positive
A negative working environment can be absolute poison and destroy productivity, enthusiasm and general happiness. In workplaces like this the employees will dread coming to work in the morning and will count the seconds before they can leave again. Not exactly the perfect recipe for business success.
Talk to me
A lack of proper communication in the workplace can easily lead to employee discontentment. Most of us like to know where we stand, where we’re going and what we’re doing right/wrong. Without these open lines of communication in our working lives it is easy to become frustrated and unhappy, especially when hearing about the working situation that our friends and family enjoy.
All change please
Career changes are becoming more common in a society where options are plentiful and we are often pressured into making initial decisions very early on when most are too young to know better. Unless working for a huge company with a variety of departments it will be rather unlikely that this change will be possible with a current employer.
The curious incidents
For some, their feelings about the workplace can dramatically change after a certain incident. These could be anything from a disagreement with a colleague or a mistake they make that leads to disciplinary action. These incidents are often unfortunate or unavoidable but can be incredibly detrimental to someone’s happiness at work. If deemed to have caused irreparable damage then a parting of ways is somewhat unavoidable.
Gotta have faith
Some employees will join a company with the belief that they have found a company that shares their values and beliefs or high hopes of what they believe that this company will achieve. Should either of these things prove not to be the case then it will likely lead to a loss of faith that is difficult to come back from. A strong belief in the company that you are working for can be a powerful motivator, a loss of faith can have the exact opposite effect.
Lonely at the bottom
It can be incredibly frustrating to be consistently overlooked for promotions and watch those around you progress. As mentioned before, those that feel that they have hit a glass ceiling are unlikely to stay with that employer for very long. If there are opportunities for progression but certain individuals aren’t given them then this will also likely lead to those individuals looking elsewhere.
These are just some of the more common reasons that employees might become unhappy in their working life and as mentioned before some are unavoidable however if you can keep these in mind, stay alert to them and take what actions you can to prevent or address them then you might find that your staff stick around a while longer.
In the 2nd part of this blog, we will discuss actions you can take to create a positive working environment and increase your employee retention. The 2nd instalment will be out on Thursday 15th May so stay tuned…