What is the No. 1 reason employees quit their jobs? More often than not, it’s not about the money; it’s about the environment at work. There are many factors that contribute to an undesirable work environment, but they all have one thing in common: It’s the manager who creates the environment who is ultimately responsible for driving employees away.
According to research by AbsoluteGlobal.net, the top 10 reasons employees leave their jobs are all related to the inability of managers to provide a work environment that meets their employees’ needs. To retain talent, managers must find ways to provide a workplace culture that promotes productivity while keeping employees challenged, stimulated and fulfilled. Here are a few strategies to help you do that:
- Make work challenging. People tend to enjoy their work more when there is some sort of challenge involved. Solving problems invigorates people and makes them feel good about what they do.
- Empower your employees. Employees who have some say in how they do their jobs tend to be happier and more fulfilled. Empower your employees by giving them the latitude to make decisions related to their jobs, even if that means allowing them to make mistakes now and then.
- Don’t overwork your employees. One of the biggest reasons employees leave is because they are expected to do more work than they can handle. If you lay off several employees and distribute their work to those who are left behind, you are going to end up with overworked and stressed out employees who can’t wait to leave. Keep employees’ workloads fair.
- Ask them what they want. You don’t have to wait until someone quits to find out what needs are not being met. Ask questions to determine potential problem areas and take steps to eliminate them.
- Show appreciation. A common complaint among employees is the lack of appreciation. Too many times, employees are expected to give everything they have without getting anything for their efforts but a paycheck. People love to hear that they’ve done a good job. Give praise freely when it is merited; it costs nothing and does far more to keep employees happy and motivated than most tangible benefits.
No matter how effective you are at providing a positive environment for your employees, you’ll always have some employee turnover. Make sure you take advantage of the opportunity to conduct exit interviews whenever employees leave. The reasons may have nothing to do with you, but if they do, you need to find out so you can take corrective action to keep from making the same mistakes again in the future.
Joel Garfinkle is the author of “Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to the Next Level.” As an executive coach, Garfinkle has worked with many top international companies, including Cisco Systems, Oracle, Deloitte, Amazon, Starbucks, Google, Citibank, Microsoft and The Ritz-Carlton. You can view more than 100 articles on leadership communication, and subscribe to his leadership-development newsletter to receive e-book “40 Proven Strategies to Get Promoted Now!” for free.