3 key signs an employee is about to leave

Recognising when an employee is getting ready to leave is important. It’s a sign you need to switch up your management or risk watching your talent walk out the door.

signs an employee is about to leave: someone walking away with a bag

Sometimes the signs an employee is about to leave are obvious. Sometimes the employee won’t even have admitted it to him or herself. Wanting something better doesn’t make them ungrateful, though. It makes them ambitious and self-aware. They’re not alone in wanting more. Only 13 percent of employees worldwide are engaged in their job, according to Gallup.

But how do you know when an employee is about to type up their resignation letter and head for greener pastures? Here are three key signs to give you a heads up that you need to work on your management skills:

1. They are not progressing

You work hard, you stay loyal, you get promoted. That is generally what we expect from our job. Some employers are slow on the final step. Whether it’s a mere oversight, or you are intentionally holding back your team’s progression to cut costs, they deserve better.

44 percent of people cite lack of career progression as a main concern. It is called a career ladder for a reason. Nobody gets on expecting to stay on the same rung forever. So start looking at the bigger picture and consider how a promotion could actually boost the business.

2. They are not using their strengths

Everyone is good at something. That is why you hired them. Sometimes this changes though: it might be that the job they applied for and the job they do every day no longer match. Or, perhaps, they’ve outgrown what they were initially good at and it doesn’t provide the same challenge.

Without a challenge in our daily work life, we fall into a rut. We do the same work over and over without achieving anything more than our daily/weekly targets. Being in a rut leads to low productivity and unhappiness.

Keep challenging your team and check in with them regularly to find out where their passions lie and how you can combine them with the needs of the business.

3. They have mentally checked out

For an unhappy employee, it starts on Sunday evening. The dread sets in as they prepare for another five days at work. When they’re in the office their eyes are on the clock. They find it hard to get enthusiastic about their tasks for the day, despite once enjoying the work.

It not only affects productivity, but mind and body, too. Job satisfaction can lead to low self-esteem, depression, anxiety and poor sleep patterns.

Hopefully you’ve stepped in before it gets this bad and it might be that once your employee is at this stage it’s simply too late. But either way, it’s about talking to them, showing them that there are opportunities for development and change and supporting them as they try new things.

Don’t ignore the signs an employee is about to leave

A nine to five job takes up at least 40 hours of your employee’s week, not including commute and overtime. That is a large chunk of their life. You owe it to them – not to mention the business and the economy – to maintain and nurture a position that they, at the very least, can learn from, progress in, and enjoy.

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