Why Good Employees Quit | DCR Workforce Blog

Why Good Employees Quit

You search high and low, dig through applications, interview everyone under the sun to finally find that gem of an employee who is a dream come true. As a recruiter you’re so excited because you finally found the answer to your company’s productivity prayers! But then you get a two-week notice from your star employee. Now your dream is turning into a nightmare, as you stress over the process of finding a suitable replacement. But why did this person suddenly quit? Was it the employee or the company who had problems? Unfortunately, research shows that it was probably the company that drove away the employee.

Companies are often stumped as to why good employees quit, but if you really think about it, the answer isn’t that difficult to figure out.

Top reasons for employee turnover

1) Being overworked

Part of being considered a valued worker means that the employee does amazing work and as a manger, you don’t want that level of excellence and productivity to ever end. One employee might be doing the work of two or three people, and sometimes even the work of the manager. A company could be understaffed or going through restructuring. Worst case, as a manager you’re inundating this one person with an unreasonable amount of tasks. When one person is feeling obligated to complete such a large part of the workload, getting burnt out and an exit strategy are in the very near future.

2) No opportunity for growth

As a good employee masters a certain set of skills, they’ll want to learn more, take on more responsibilities and have a higher position. They may also have certain interests that they feel will bring more value to their work. Good employees need to feel like they’re growing and being challenged. By stifling a talented person with no prospects for growth or better job opportunities, it might not seem worthwhile to them to continue on.

3) Employees leave managers not companies

We all have to deal with different and sometimes challenging personalities at work. However, some managers abuse their powers by mistreating and even borderline exploiting employees. When hiring a manager, companies have to look at candidates with the ability to lead and care for his or her employees. Great managers don’t just assign tasks, they listen and help employees reach their potential. Being able to relate to and motivate people is a must to retain all employees. A recent Gallup study of 7,200 adults found that half of all U.S. employees leave their jobs to get away from their boss.

4) Insufficient compensation and benefits package

Many good employees quit their jobs because they have not received a bonus or salary increase, despite high company profits. If a good employee can easily find a job at another company and get a higher salary, it’s highly likely that they’ll quickly leave. Companies can prevent this type of employee turnover by rewarding good employees and also checking current wages that other companies offer to stay competitive. Furthermore, a top-notch benefits package that has satisfactory health care for employees with families, short- and long-term disability insurance and matching an employee’s 401(k) are still desirable and strong incentives.

5) Not being valued

According to Entrepreneur, 65 percent of employees would be happier if they got more recognition at work from their managers. It may seem like a small thing to just take a moment to say “thank you” or “good job” but a small gesture can have a great impact. In some cases, good employees are overlooked and the wrong employees are promoted. The good employee is now left wondering if the company that they work for even knows or cares about how much they contribute.

6) Not providing feedback

Managers sometimes fear giving feedback because they’re unsure about how employees will take it. Yet feedback needs to be given since employees still need some sort of development role from their managers. This is especially true for millennial workers – a recent poll indicates that almost 80 percent of millennials say they want constant feedback from their managers. Giving feedback should be in a positive, “coach-like” tone. Managers need to focus on what needs to be improved, and these insights have to be provided on a consistent basis. Yearly reviews are often considered an outdated approach for this generation of workers.

Now that we know some of the most common reasons good employees leave a job, there needs to be some investigating. If a company is experiencing high turnover by some of their best employees, it’s obvious that something is wrong and needs to be addressed before it turns into an even bigger problem. It may help to conduct exit interviews. Don’t be afraid to ask why an employee is leaving. You could be able to spot a problem within the company that’s being seriously overlooked. It may be hard to get to the truth but it’s worth it in the end.

Why do you think good employees quit? How are you preventing them from leaving?

The content on this blog is for informational purposes only and cannot be construed as specific legal advice or as a substitute for competent legal advice. They reflect the opinions of DCR Workforce and may not reflect the opinions of any individual attorney. Do contact an attorney for advice specific to your issue or problem.

One response to “Why Good Employees Quit”

  1. Angelo Kit says:

    I agree with the reasons mentioned here. I think this can be useful for HR practitioners and business owners in making employee retention strategies.

    This article, which I think is supplementary to this post, can also be useful: http://www.manilarecruitment.com/manila-recruitment-articles-advice/ways-your-company-is-driving-away-talent/

Preeta is a writer and a mom who writes about topics that strive to connect with readers in a real way.