Employees are leaving left and right these days. The Great Resignation/Reshuffle/Opportunity has forever altered the employment landscape. While there is always ebb and flow with retention, now it feels like we’re bleeding employees. It’s time to change our perspective and welcome employee departure as an opportunity to re-evaluate our present state, discover areas that need improvement, and attract new talent that strengthens our teams.
We need to celebrate the departing employee’s new opportunity and honor the transition with a small celebration that allows the employee to share the next phase of their journey with co-workers. Let’s ask employees who quit to script their departure story and collaborate with them to present it in an effective way that benefits the remaining employees. We must be sure to make the focus of the exit interview discovery and learn what the employee was seeking elsewhere.
If we could have provided it but fell short, we need to work to implement it. If not, we can listen and acknowledge the incentive options offered by others. Flexibility options seem to be a key driver in today’s departures so let’s take the time to learn what that looked like to the employee. Perhaps we could have met their needs/demands or maybe not. In this time of custom fit schedules and work locations, yes, it is an employer’s market, but let’s make sure that we don’t get lost in scrambling to meet every demand without making sure that the employee is meeting the organization’s needs. It’s a balancing act and achieving satisfaction for everyone is the goal.
The goal is not to become the most sought-after employer because we give every employee every wish they imagine. This is not a popularity contest. Nor should it become an opportunity for employees to abuse employer vulnerability due to attrition. We must work to make our cultures as desirable and conducive to employee growth and contribution as possible. Our goal should always be to encourage employee autonomy and equip employees to succeed as they self-lead, and solicit and implement employee feedback. Finally, let’s approach the increase in workload that departures may cause as a catalyst for growth and ascension in the employees who remain.
We have the choice to view this exodus as a needed shakeup. It is forcing improvement at all levels.