Is Your Top Talent Preparing to Leave? 8 Signs They Are And How To Stop It
There are signs of a great resignation happening. The pandemic has given people perspective, time to think and the feeling of autonomy—what we’ve experienced working from home rather than going to an office. In addition, many of us have felt overworked, under-resourced and beaten down over the past year. Adam Grant talked about the collective feeling of languishing that so aptly addresses our current mood. And, most recently with the world starting to re-open and business activity booming, open job positions abound. What does this all point to? It means that top talent holds the power. If they weren’t happy or were frustrated with their jobs in 2020, they’re now taking action and leaving. They might even be jumping on the YOLO bandwagon and taking a sabbatical, starting a business they’ve always dreamed about or changing their lives completely. This is a lot to manage as a leader of an organization. You’ve worked tirelessly in 2020 to ensure your survival and make sure that your team was safe. Now, you’re experiencing resignations left and right and trying to not go crazy with the additional workload and the chaos that turnover creates. For most of us, 2021 isn’t a year we’ll spend getting back to normal. Rather, it’s a year of navigating a different kind of chaos and re-thinking everything. But, if you’d like to do so with your top talent still on board, there’s an important question to ask now: How do you predict or see the signs that some of your employees are leaving?
8 Signs You May Have An Imminent Departure On Your Hands
They aren’t following through on requests.
They seem disengaged, distracted, and disinterested.
They aren’t being proactive with ideas or suggestions.
They’re overly agreeable and don’t offer their own opinions.
They’ve made requests that they’ve not been granted.
They’re distancing themselves from virtual social gatherings or company-wide meetings.
They aren’t talking about career progression.
They are taking a large amount of vacation that may have been accumulating over the past year.
If you sense that someone’s about to leave, what do you do? And most importantly, what can you do to ensure that your top people stay?
How To Address Individuals On The Brink Of Leaving
Ask them directly if they’ve been feeling frustrated or unhappy lately, and why. Help them feel supported and safe in this conversation by taking time to understand their reasoning.
Let them know you’re committed to helping them stay at the organization and would like to find ways to address their concerns.
Get their help in thinking through any issues that may be causing problems for others, and ask them to get involved in the solutions, which can help give them purpose at work.
If you’re not already, get clear on who you are as a leader and as an organization and what change is possible versus what isn’t.
Tell them that you’ll be as open and honest with them as possible, and request that they’re open and honest about their transitions in return.
What To Do To Get Your Employees To Stay
Demonstrate being open, transparent and communicative—lead with the behavior you’re wanting to see in your team.
Stay connected to engagement levels. Send out a survey or go on a listening tour to measure the engagement levels of the rest of your organization, and create a forum to openly discuss any issues.
Make it a priority to address the issues that arise. If you don’t have the internal resources to manage this process, hire an external resource for assistance. Often an external resource can see blind-spots faster than someone on the inside.
Think of innovative solutions that are a win/win. If you’re saving money by letting your office go, for example, let your team know they’ll get something that will benefit them in return, such as unlimited vacation, budget for career support or access to a career coach.
Focus your benefits on what really matters. Great performance is being engaged and fulfilled, so provide benefits that will increase autonomy and allow people to operate within their Zone of Genius. (Hint: If they’re not sure, have them take this quiz.)
When in doubt, make sure that you’re regularly communicating with your team about what’s most important to them. This creates a safe environment where your team can be open about how they really feel. At the end of the day, we’re all unique and have different needs, wants, and desires. The key to ensuring your team is happy is giving them the freedom and autonomy to be who they are and do their jobs in the way they work best. That’s a true win/win, because nothing will bring more success to a growing business than employees who are delighted to be at work every day!