Many employers are feeling the impact of The Great Resignation, the trend where employees are continuing to quit their jobs in record numbers, following the COVID-19 pandemic.
But the good news is that turnover is not a lost cause. There are actions employers can take to reduce employee turnover and create sustainable and realistic changes.
“We need to think beyond the pain of the moment,” recommends Jenifer Lambert, TERRA’s Chief Strategy Officer. “Because the decisions that you make today will have a lasting impact.”
Here are tips to help employers learn from turnover.
- Respond with curiosity and facts.
- Study the people who are staying.
- Leave the door open to those who have left.
- Keep an empathetic and open ear.
These strategies can turn a negative into a positive.
How to respond to employee turnover.
1. Respond with curiosity and facts.
Replace the drama with data. When you’re starting to see a trend of people leaving, the resulting stress can make the situation feel bigger than it actually is.
Refrain from using terms like “everyone” or “no one” to describe what’s happening.
Rather, use accurate language. Look at the actual number of people who are leaving compared to the number of people staying. Think of this as a puzzle to be solved, in order to understand why people are quitting their jobs.
Employers can also utilize exit interviews to learn about employee concerns and how their experience could have been better. Ask questions to help determine why they quit. Was there one reason guiding their decision or were there several contributing factors? Did they want better pay or a different schedule?
This kind of information can help employers identify trends and think about possible solutions.
2. Study the people who are staying.
Understanding the people who are choosing to stay is just as important as examining the people who have left.
Because employee turnover doesn’t just affect the success of the company. It can directly impact the work-life balance of existing employees.
If employee turnover results in additional work for these job stayers, help them adapt. They may need support if their responsibilities increase or change abruptly.
Get ahead of what may be causing employee turnover by collecting a survey. What are the reasons they’re staying? How can the company double down on what they value most? Ask the people who are staying to rate their level of job satisfaction and provide any pain points they may be experiencing.
Remember, just because they aren’t leaving, doesn’t mean employees don’t have concerns that could be addressed.
3. Leave the door open to those who have left.
Be gracious to those who are choosing to leave and make sure they feel totally comfortable reaching back out. Let them know that returning to the company is an option. Because there is a chance that they may regret their decision to quit.
There is a new phenomenon resulting from “The Great Resignation” called “The Great Regret,” and many job-quitters are realizing the grass is not always greener. In fact, 48% of people that quit their jobs said they want their old job back.
This could also be an opportunity to create an alumni program to stay engaged with former employees. Some engagement strategies could include a dedicated newsletter or professional development opportunities.
When company culture includes welcoming the return of former employees, it’s a win-win situation.
4. Keep an empathetic and open ear.
Tell employees how important they are to the success of the company.
Maintain an open dialogue and let them know that they can voice their concerns. This will help employers get to the root of a problem before it becomes an issue that causes another employee to quit.
And it can build trust in employer-employee work relationships. Demonstrating that you value honesty and helping employees address problems contributes to better job satisfaction.
Otherwise, employees might believe that what they want is not an option and shy away from talking to their manager. But if they know that an open discussion or a compromise is available, they may be more likely to reach out when something is bothering them.
Use their feedback to ideate solutions that are sustainable and beneficial to both employees and the company.
There isn’t just one answer to employee turnover. In fact, there are many ways to apply learning and feedback in order to create positive change within an organization.
To learn more about responding to employee turnover, watch Jenifer’s informative video, Making the Most of Employee Turnover.
How TERRA Can Be a Resource
If you find yourself needing staffing help, don’t hesitate to reach out to TERRA. We work with many great companies across a variety of industries. Our expert team is eager to be a resource to you.