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Employee turnover will cost you, and in ways you may not have previously considered. Higher than average turnover can sink morale, cut production, and tax you dearly in training costs. Although not every resignation can or should be thwarted, by understanding the reasons why employees quit, you can reduce turnover accordingly. We’ll take a look at seven reasons why employees resign and move on as well as how to counter each one.

1. Poor hiring decisions.

Sometimes people leave or are pressured out simply because they were the wrong person for the job. Worse, this individual may have been wrong for your company’s culture. That’s a clash in interests that could have been averted before they were hired.

If your company consistently hires the wrong people, then your method of recruiting, evaluating, interviewing, and offering jobs to these individuals is all wrong. Something is broken in the process and needs to be fixed. Human Resources must be empowered to have the final say whether an individual is hired or not. If they already have that say, then something in the HR department needs overhauling.

2. An uncompetitive compensation package.

Salary and benefits work in tandem to form your business’ compensation package. Naturally, such packages should be tailored to individual employees, especially as they move up in the ranks.

While the initial compensation package may be sufficient to attract an employee, it may not be enough to retain them, especially as time passes. Top talent will flee the moment they get a whiff of better compensation elsewhere. Your HR team must keep tabs on packages across the industry and recommend changes accordingly.

3. Lack of recognition.

While pay and benefits are certainly important, individuals crave recognition, especially for work done well. It is important for your business to regularly and consistently recognize accomplishments, both privately and publicly.

Morale is tied in closely with recognition. If an employee doesn’t feel appreciated for her hard work, then she may seek an employer who is known for building up their employees.

4. No clear path forward.

Unless your new hire is a part-timer or other individual not concerned with career advancement, you must assume that all others are. This means when a new hire is brought in, he must understand what the job entails and where it can lead him.

For instance, if there is a clear path to advancement, this must be outlined early on. Then, your team must work to ensure that this individual at least has a shot at moving up. People will not languish in a position without some idea where they’re headed in 1, 3 or 5 years.

5. Employees are not encouraged to follow their passion.

Let’s face it: many employees are passionate about what they do, even if you don’t readily detect that passion. Not everyone is an inventor or a sales maven, but chances are they like what they do. A lot.

This is where your team must gauge each employee’s passion and respond accordingly. You need not fear talent them not getting their work done. In fact, they’ll be more efficient at what they do if you allow them to pursue additional interests.

6. Management doesn’t care.

Not all managers are people persons, but they need to work on their people skills. This is especially so if you catch a whiff that employees don’t feel that management cares about them.

That caring starts with simple tasks such as smiling and greeting employees. It also means that your managers must have an open door policy — or something close to it — whereby employees have access to them. If the problem is persistent, the issue may be with a manager who needs retraining or in some circumstances, assigned to a different role.

7. Your team is overworked.

Salaried employees typically work a schedule that may go well beyond the usual 40-hour week. That’s understood at many companies, but constant long hours can take a toll.

Employees who go from one long-term involved project to the next can easily burn out. Productivity falls, absences increase and before you know it a resignation is tendered. Certainly, you may have pressing project needs, but these should never come at the cost of your team members.

If long hours are the order of the day, then one way to combat fatigue is giving your team members some flexibility. This means if a parent wants to attend a child’s in-school recital or cut out early some afternoon to spend time with a spouse, this should be encouraged. Ultimately, however, a change in the way your team works may be necessary, including hiring additional staff to pitch in.

Happy Employees Mean Productive Workers

Not all employee grievances may seem legitimate in your eyes, but they may be to your team. A healthy work environment leads to productive workers, individuals who will work their hardest, stay around, and contribute to your enterprise’s bottom line.

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