The one thing you can do to prevent your star employees from bolting
Tuesday, August 13, 2019
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Another company is about to lose a star employee. But they don’t know this yet. You see, their star employee hired me a few months ago as his coach to help him better manage his relationship with his boss.
We discussed his situation over a few sessions, and it became clear to me that his efforts to change his boss’ way would fall on deaf ears. I told him this, and he halfheartedly agreed.
He said he wanted to see if he could make things work with his current employer. That was six weeks ago. He’s now seen the light and is ready to move on.
This person plays a pivotal role in the organization and will be a significant loss to this company. To make matters worse, he’s not the only one who is about to bolt.
Nobody likes to talk about it even though it is happening in workplaces across America — employees who have decided it is time to fly the coop. Departure lounges are overflowing with these types of employees — all waiting for their final boarding call.
Employees rarely start a job thinking they will tour around the company for a while and then seek greener pastures, and yet it happens all the time.
Here’s the one thing you can do to prevent employees from taking flight:
Check-in with your employees on a regular basis.
I get that your super busy and don’t have time for chit-chat. If that’s the case, then surely you don’t have time to restaff critical positions and work closely with people until they’re able to perform in their new role with limited supervision.
That says to me that you better make time to talk to your people, or they will look for someone who does have the time to pay attention to them — your choice.
Here’s one quick tip that will make a world of difference.
Consider implementing what I call my "Time Out for a Coffee" campaign.
Block out 30 minutes on your calendar biweekly (or weekly if possible) and invite people to join you for a cup of coffee (or tea). Encourage participants to talk about any issues that are top of mind during these meetups.
When doing so, be fully present. Turn off your phone and be in the moment. If a situation calls for it, schedule a follow-up meeting to address specific matters that need more of your attention.
I’ve had clients implement this campaign, and they are amazed by the results. They’ve told me this one small move has resulted in a considerable shift in their relationship with their employees. Employee turnover has dropped substantially, employees appear to be more engaged at work, and they look forward to those days when they have coffee scheduled with their people.
Showing your people that you genuinely care about them will prevent them from searching for another employer who values their contribution. This move doesn’t cost much to do. However, the results are priceless!
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