5 Signs Your Best Employee is Thinking of Leaving (and What You Should Do About it) 

Employees are at the heart of any business, but good employees are what make that heart beat. An employee who is trustworthy, reliable, great at their job and wants to do their best for you and your business is like gold dust.

The only downside is that people like this sometimes don’t stick around for very long. They either get swayed by a better offer or perhaps consider starting their own business.

So what are the signs that your star employee is considering jumping ship, and what can you do about it?  

Signs that your best employee is thinking about leaving 

You notice changes in performance or behaviour  

If their performance suddenly drops, they start coming in late, or they don’t seem as motivated, they might be thinking about moving on.  

They’re dropping hints 

Are they hinting that they’re looking for a change, or talking about jobs they’d like to do? Be observant about things like this, they might be planting seeds in your mind that they intend to leave.  

You’re getting fewer sales from certain clients 

Could the employee be poaching clients while they’re working on setting up their own business? If sales are dropping from particular clients, this could be the reason.  

They’re experiencing difficulties in their personal lives 

Changing family circumstances can mean that your employee might need to make some changes to their working life, and this might include leaving their job role. Don’t get too involved in personal situations, but make sure that you know what’s going on so you can offer them support. This might be the difference between retaining a good employee and losing one.  

They’re taking random days off 

An employee who takes the odd day off here and there might be using those days to go to interviews. Pay attention if this starts happening regularly.  

What can you do?  

The first thing is don’t confront them and accuse them of planning to leave or applying for other jobs, even if that’s your first reaction. Have an open and honest discussion to determine if there’s something going on in their life or if their lack of engagement is related to their job role.

Does the employee feel isolated or disengaged because of a lack of recognition or feedback?

Remedy this by having regular one to one meetings or team meetings, and making sure you give them adequate feedback. Reward praise where it’s due, even if it’s done via an email rather than in person, it still means something and makes an employee feel valued.  

If the employee wants to leave because they feel like they have gone as far as they can with your business, ask them about their goals and if you can do anything to help them develop further.

Ask them outright if they feel they are getting what they want out of their current job role.  

If, despite your best efforts, the employee does want to leave, let them. It might be very difficult letting someone good go, but it’s far better to have someone stay with your business and work for you because they want to, not because they feel bribed or strong-armed into it.

What you’ll most likely have then is a disengaged employee whose heart is just not in it anymore. It won’t prevent the inevitable, it just delays it.  

If you realise you are losing a lot of employees and you’re not sure why then I can help.

Want to enhance your team further, here’s a blog to read.

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