The Startling Reasons Your Organization Can’t Retain Top Talent

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Jeff Gilden

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Employee turnover rates seem to be higher than ever with the common assumption being the employees are to blame, particularly the millennial generation of employees. However, statistics show that this presumption is incorrect – 25 years ago, the average employee tenure was around three and a half years. In 2018, the average rose to a little over five years for employees to stay put with one company. So if the employees aren’t consistently the ones to blame for high turnover rates, it may be time to look at the other side – namely, the companies.

While there are a variety of situations that can occur which force people to explore other employment opportunities, there are four scenarios that consistently stand out and almost always lead to the same end result. Perhaps if organizations can notice the patterns as they occur, they will be able to fix the issues early on and increase employee retention rates.

Lack of Employee Trust & Autonomy

Have you ever worked in a role where you were micromanaged? Perhaps every move you made was questioned, you were told you couldn’t think outside the box, and eventually you felt so stifled you needed some fresh air…and you never went back. When an organization’s leadership cannot trust their employees, they create a restrictive environment that cannot sustain healthy workplace standards long-term. Organizations who create flexible policies and place their trust in their employees will often see natural growth over time, as well as longer employment terms.

No Upward Mobility or Room to Grow

Companies with little to no advancement opportunities often will lose their top talent at faster rates than other, more dysfunctional organizations. If there’s no structure to move up into management opportunities, good employees will only stay as long as they must for their resumes. Once their term has been completed, they will move on to other organizations where they can find the next rung of the ladder. To adapt to this, start to reevaluate your current org chart: can another level of management be created and if so, what benefits would that bring to your overall organization?

Work Life Balance is Non-Existent

In 2019, the World Health Organization included “burn-out” in the eleventh revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) as an occupational phenomenon. In high-stress roles that include little to no work life balance, burnout is far more likely to appear, and if not treated, it can be the end of a career – or worse. Since it’s a serious health risk, many employees are forced to leave roles where their organization doesn’t provide them the flexibility needed to live a well-rounded life. Telecommuting and robust PTO policies are great ways to easily combat burnouts in high-stress industries.

Toxic Culture

Although it can be difficult to keep track of your employees’ behaviors, management needs to be aware of the environment they are fostering for their employees. A negative atmosphere in the workplace is one of the most common reasons many good employees will seek new roles. For organizations with no dedicated human resources departments, employees may feel trapped or alone when toxic culture hits. Ever heard of the phrase “one rotten apple spoils the bunch”? This can be especially true in a work environment and it is management’s responsibility to offer a safe place for employees to come to discuss their interpersonal issues and express frustrations as they arise.

In the twenty-first century, it’s important for organizations to step up and acknowledge that the responsibility to retain top talent will always fall on them. When individuals are in roles they are passionate about, are provided the room to grow and advance, and experience little to no workplace drama, they will often commit themselves fully to their organization for the long haul. In the end, it’s important for organizations to foster environments that allow employees to communicate needs and be respected in order to ensure a long-term commitment.

Biotech Partners often partners with Human Resources departments and small businesses to optimize their hiring processes. Reach out to us today to see how we can expand and retain your talent pool without wasting time and money!

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