How to deal with employees leaving you!

It can be really tough when employees resign – when they suddenly quit their job. Especially if he or she is one of your key employees…

 When employees resign their job …

“Sorry boss, I resign!”

“I quit!”

“I am no longer with this company. This is my resignation!”

Waoh! That can be very emotional. As a manager you feel suddenly like riding the roller coaster – downwards.

Immediately after you hear the bad news, you normally ask yourself

“Damned, Who will now take over his work? Who can replace him?”

“With her leaving, will we now loose our No. 1 customer?”

“How will we ever meet the important project deadline without him?“

Stay calm. Don’t panic. If you had a good relation with your employee he or she will seldom leave you in a total mess.

Even if: You’ll find a solution. Life goes on. Business goes on – even if it may become a little bumpy. There is a more important question to ask – and that is Why?

Why did he or she leave?

What is the reason? Does the reason have to do with you or your company? Was the employee unhappy with his or her position?

You may have heard the saying:

“Employees leave managers not companies.”

and there is a lot of truth in it. Lots of employees leave their jobs because they can’t stand their boss any longer or they feel exploited or they feel underpaid. But is does not necessarily have to do with you as the manager or leader.

Do you support your employees?

If you are a good leader you support your employees. You constantly try to help them in their personal development. So the reason for leaving might be that your employee sees a great chance to develop further outside your company.

If you really care and support your employees in their personal development then you need to let them go without being angry or depressed.

Ask for feedback!

When someone quits first ask yourself what might be the reason? Hopefully you have a good relation with your employees. Then you have a fair chance to get an honest feedback. Just ask him or her. Try to figure out what the real reason for leaving is.

If it is your management style think about if and what you need to improve or change.

Does your employee leave because you or your company cannot offer him the next step of his career or the next level in his personal development? Well than you should be happy for him that he found this step somewhere else.

Take care that you support him in his new direction outside your company. That is also your task as a true leader.

  • http://www.bizsugar.com/ Heather Stone

    Hi Bernd,
    Certainly it isn’t always dissatisfaction that causes employers to move on. Sometimes it’s a better opportunity. What can you do? I do think it’s a good idea to find out if there is another reason, however. Does this happen regularly to you? Are they really leaving for a better position or are they simply taking any position available to get out of your company? I think these are some of the key questions you must answer first to figure out whether further soul searching is necessary.

    • http://www.more-leadership.com Bernd Geropp

      Heather,
      You are certainly right: If you have people leaving regularly, chances are high that they are not just leaving for a better position but that they just want to get out of your company. You need to address that problem. Thanks for your good comment.

    • http://www.more-leadership.com/ Bernd Geropp

      Heather,

      You are certainly right: If you have people leaving regularly, chances
      are high that they are not just leaving for a better position but that
      they just want to get out of your company. You need to address that
      problem. Thanks for your good comment.

  • http://www.enmast.com/ Devan Perine

    Exit interviews are absolutely imperative to conduct when someone leaves so you can find out things like the reason they’re leaving and unearth if there are any other problems going on.

    Though just know that not all employees will tell you the truth, or the whole truth — like if you had a really awful boss which was the main reason for leaving (which is one of the biggest reasons employees leave) and they’re conducting the exit interview, chances are you probably won’t tell them the whole truth why you’re leaving.

    • http://www.more-leadership.com/ Bernd Geropp

      Devan, Thanks for your comment. I agree that not all employees will tell you the truth. But the more you are a good leader the more you have a good chance that you get an honest feedback.

      An awful boss who showed no respect to his or her employees will have big problems to receive a true and helpful feedback – regularly or druning exit interviews.

      A few months ago I wrote a guest post on Dan McCarthys “Great Leadership Blog” on how to get feedback from employees. Check it out here: http://www.greatleadershipbydan.com/2012/07/5-proven-tips-to-get-honest-feedback.html

      • http://www.enmast.com/ Devan Perine

        Great article, Bernd! Really good tips in there. And so true — the better the leader you are, the more employees will be honest and open with you. (though it doesn’t happen over night ;) )

  • Steve Stifler

    Regardless of my high and accurate performance have worked for 22 months and resigned from this company that has resignation ratio of at least 2 to 3 employees resigns per month.