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Secrets to Zero Surprises with Resignations

Secrets to Zero Surprises with Resignations


The sustained "Great Resignation" trend has affected employers since 2021. Many employees decided they had enough of unfair wages, inflexible remote working policies, lack of career advancement, and overall job dissatisfaction. Employers experienced significant turnover and continue to struggle tremendously to hire replacements in the tightest labor market I've seen.


But there's hope; experts say the Great Resignation is over*! The end of this era doesn't fix the tight labor market, but at least employers can take a deep breath about losing more employees.


Unfortunately, not really. Employees will still resign - hopefully not in masses and all at the same time - but they will. So, let's learn from the Great Resignation and find ways to prevent it or anything like it from happening again. I have a solution:


Establish a metric for your managers of people to have ZERO surprises with resignations. That means a manager should never be surprised an employee has resigned. Mind-blowing, I know. Here are the secrets of how managers can accomplish no surprises with resignations:

  • Regularly ask employees how they are doing, what they love most about their job, and what they would change

  • Ask employees for feedback on your management style

  • Learn employees' professional goals and help them create a plan to achieve them

  • Follow up on what they would change; either make the change or honestly address why the change isn't happening and agree on an acceptable substitution

  • Let Executives and HR know about flight risk (resignation) concerns and brainstorm a plan to retain the employee (if desired)

Of course, these secrets all work best when Executives support a 'no-judgment' approach if a manager admits they have an employee who might be a flight risk.


That coupled with a 'zero surprises with resignations' metric, you'll reduce turnover, improve retention, prevent unexpected resignations, and have more engaged employees. And even if employees resign - and they will - at least you will know you tried to turn things around and have zero regrets.


-Authored by a real human, Jennifer Osborn, and not AI 🙂


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*https://www.cnn.com/2023/06/13/economy/great-resignation-job-quitting-over/index.html


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