Written by: Justin Reynolds
If being a manager was easy, all you’d have to do is hire the right workers and they’d stay in place for as long as you needed them. Unfortunately, it never works out that way. In fact, despite the challenging job market, more than two million Americans voluntarily leave their jobs each month, as reported by Forbes .
Employees jump ship for a number of reasons. Some feel as though they’re not empowered at work. Others are turned off by having to play internal company politics. There are also those who are fed up with the perception that their hard work is never recognized.
Those aren’t the only reasons people decide to move on to what they hope will be greener pastures. With that in mind, let’s take a look at nine reasons employees decide to leave their companies:
1. Their responsibilities don’t match their job description
According to a recent study by Accenture — which we’ll cite for the first six reasons — 38% of employees have left their companies because they felt as though their responsibilities were out of line with their job descriptions and their salaries. This fits right in with our previous discovery that 25% of workers would leave their employers for a 10% raise somewhere else. If your entry-level employees are expected to handle a senior-level workload, don’t be surprised if a number of them decide to jump ship.
2. Their work isn’t interesting
Thirty-four percent of workers said they’ve left jobs because they found the work they were responsible for to be mind-numbingly boring. You can’t expect your employees to do the same uninteresting tasks day in and day out and still be motivated to go above and beyond on a daily basis. To reduce the chances that your employees think their work isn’t interesting, encourage them to pursue pet projects of their choosing. Also allow them to collaborate with colleagues in other departments. Switch things up a bit and work should pique their interest at least a little more.
3. They are forced to work long, inflexible hours
According to the Accenture study, 31% of employees have left jobs because they were expected to log long hours regularly — and those hours had to be worked during specific times from specific locations. Mobile technology and 4G networks (and 5G networks too) have made it easier than ever for workers to stay connected no matter where they happen to be. Your employees know how easy it is for you to let them do their jobs from any location during the hours that work best for them. Enable your employees to work remotely and make their own flexible schedules and they’ll be more likely to stick around.
4. They don’t receive feedback or recognition from their bosses
Thirty-one percent of employees also said they’ve quit companies because their supervisors never gave them helpful feedback to help them develop their skills — or they didn’t take enough proactive steps to recognize a job well done. There’s no sense in waiting until the end of the year to assess an employee’s performance. Good news: Thanks to new performance management tools, it’s easier than ever for managers to provide actionable feedback in a timely manner. What’s more, according to a recent study, 58% of employees believe that their managers could increase engagement simply by recognizing their hard work more frequently. Make employee recognition a top priority, and your workers will stick around.
5. They are unable to make an impact at work
Today’s workers care a great deal about doing meaningful work. Unfortunately, 28% of employees have left their jobs because they didn’t feel they could make a positive impact in their organization. To solve this problem, invest resources to ensure your employees start believing that their work is meaningful and that they matter significantly to the organization. Invest in their professional development. Allow them to do work that caters to their talents. Recognize your employees’ hard work. Be a socially responsible partner of the community you work in. Work hard to build a culture that fosters camaraderie.
6. They do not have a connection with their coworkers
Colleagues are the number one thing employees like about their jobs. But that’s only if they get along with each other on a deeper basis. According to the Accenture study, 20% of employees have left a job because they were unable to connect with their peers on a meaningful level. There’s a good chance this feeling of disconnection is more rampant in your organization than you think. In our Employee Engagement Report, we found that only 24% of workers feel connected to their colleagues — representing an 11% dip from the previous year. If you want your organization to reach its full potential, your employees need to get to know each other better. Make team-building activities a top priority at your company to help strengthen interpersonal relationships.
7. There aren’t enough opportunities for career advancement
Today’s workers care a great deal about developing professionally and advancing their careers. But according to our research, only 25% of workers believe their organizations offer adequate opportunities for professional development. As a recent Linked Ininfographic points out, the lack of opportunity for advancement is the third most common reason why people leave their companies. To counter this, promote managers internally whenever you can.
8. They don’t fit in with the company culture
According to our Engagement Report, the invisible company culture still reigns supreme. If you’ve ever worked at a place where employees were expected to head to the office every day, put their heads down, and dive into their work in total silence, you know how brutal it can be. When workers are immersed in a dreary environment they dislike, it’s only a matter of time before they look for another job — or at least stop producing at their highest level. Build a vibrant work environment that excites employees.
9. They don’t get along with their bosses
This is a common reason given as to why employees leave their jobs. But it’s an important one, so it bears repeating. A recent Gallup study revealed that 50% of employees have quit a job to get away from a terrible boss. If your employees are quitting in droves, it’s probably time to take a long look in the mirror to determine whether you are responsible for the turnover.
By knowing what causes employees to leave companies, you can take proactive steps to reduce the chances your workers decide to leave. As a result, you’ll enjoy better retention rates — and a healthier bottom line.