What makes a great employee leave a great job? We put the question to our ZSA team and what follows is a collection of their industry insight.
“In short, people leave jobs when their emotional connection to their employer becomes compromised – when they no longer feel valued, appreciated, or important” says Elizabeth Borrill, Partner at ZSA. Amrit Rai, Consultant, adds that “people leave as their contributions are not acknowledged or rewarded.”
In a similar manner, it’s important that employees feel as though they can receive guidance from company leadership. “People leave because they feel there is a lack of mentorship from their superiors,” explains Marie-Helene Cloutier, Consultant. Kathy Nitta, Support Consultant, emphasises that employees will leave because of a “lack of support from the team around them.” Another common factor is the absence of upward mobility. “An employee may leave if there is an individual in the role above them who is only a few years more senior and not likely to move in the next ten years” says Caitlyn Waring, Consultant. In other words, “they move because there is a glass ceiling,” highlights ZSA’s VP, Dominique Tardif. There can be a glass ceiling either because someone in a more senior position is likely to stay there for some time or, alternatively, there’s an abundance of talent at the same level. ZSA’s President and Co-Founder, Warren Bongard, explains that “people leave if the path to further advancement is limited by a bottleneck of talent at a similar level”.
Allowing employees the opportunity to develop and thrive within your company is clearly significant, but it may only go so far. Perhaps the easiest way to demonstrate appreciation to an employee is through compensation. ZSA’s Consultant, Travis Usher, puts it in simple terms: “money talks: people who are under-remunerated will eventually look elsewhere”. This means that the corporate compensation structure also needs be borne in mind. ZSA’s Client Partner, Mike Aujla’s experience has been that “people leave if they feel they aren’t compensated the same as their peers.”
Finally, there’s a greater emphasis now on quality of life and employers need to take this into consideration if they want to keep their teams happy. “People leave seeking more predictable work schedules and work/life balance,” Senior Consultant Lana Driscoll explains.
To all the SMT’s out there – ensure that you build and communicate a solid plan and vision for success to keep your employees happy. The most powerful solution says Christopher Sweeney, ZSA’s Co-Founder and CEO, “revolves around solid management, clear communication and an effective culture.”
Written by Sean Gardiner, LL.B., ZSA.
Graphics by Sarah Thevenin, ZSA.