Friday, October 29, 2010

The 7 Hidden Reasons Employees Leave

by WFC Resources

Jobs Vacancy, Employment, Employment Jobs

A wonderful new book by HR consultant Leigh Branham - "The 7 Hidden Reasons Employees Leave" - has taken an in-depth look at the subject, based on interviews with no less than 19,000 departing and current employees. While 90% of managers believe "employees leave and stay mostly for the money," that's far from the truth, says Branham. The real reasons: issues with job, manager, culture or work environment. Here's a little more about each, digested from a summary in the May 2005 issue of HR Magazine:

-The job or workplace "was not as expected." Managers misrepresent pay offers, hours aren't as promised, training or promotions don't come through. In other words, expectations aren't met. To narrow expectations, allow team members to interview candidates and let them sample job experiences, perhaps through computer-based simulations.

-There's a mismatch between the person and the job. Employees may not know their own strengths or what work fits them; managers may be in a hurry to hire and willing to take any warm body. The result can be employees who are bored and stressed.

-There's not enough feedback or coaching. Again, it's a manager issue and the symptoms are inattentiveness, irregular or non-existent feedback and criticism instead of praise. He suggests buddy or mentor programs and holding managers accountable for feedback.

-There are too few growth and advancement opportunities. There may be barriers between departments, training focused only on current positions, and lack of help to define career goals. Online self-assessments, career management tools and workshops can help. Information on career paths and job requirements should be readily available and the internal job posting system should be efficient and fair. Employers should show a preference for hiring from within.

-Employees feel "devalued and unrecognized." Managers should be aware that problems may arise if good employees are overdue for pay increases or are paid the same as poor performers, or if new recruits make more than experienced workers in similar jobs.

-Employees suffer "stress from overwork and work-life imbalance." Look for those who consistently work late, work through lunch, work sick, take work home, don't take vacations, are always rushing to meet deadlines or have recently experienced a family or personal crisis. The philosophy that top-flight places to work have in common: "Give first, get second."

-There's a loss of trust in top leaders. Many workers see those at the top as greedy, isolated and unconcerned about workers. In the post-Enron era, keeping worker trust in executives is vital.

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