Why Does Top Talent Leave?
Talent is your biggest asset and managing employee turnover is one of the biggest challenges that we face as leaders.
In one of my previous articles, I wrote about what happens when a top performer resigns. As leaders, we tend to concentrate more on the opportunities that our employees have outside and try to match those for our top performers to stay back. But do we look inward and evaluate if we are doing enough for our top performers to stay on a continual basis?
In a survey of 2,000 employees, almost half (43%) said they are looking for a new job. Another report suggests that only 2 out of 10 people are engaged in their jobs. It is imperative for leaders to identify the reasons for which your top talent decides to leave or look for opportunities outside.
Here are some of the most common reasons that I have come across for high performers to leave. These reasons may sound obvious to you, but think how often are you able to manage these for your top performers.
Lack of Growth Opportunities, Internally
I have had the good fortune of working with many high performers. A lack of clear growth path could be a deal breaker for many high performing employees.
At my last company, one of my top performers would never be satisfied to work on just one or two key initiatives. She would keep me on my toes to find challenging opportunities for her inside the company. Thankfully, I was able to learn how to be proactive at creating opportunities for her and was able to retain her successfully for more than four years, in a highly competitive environment.
Lack of Empowerment to Create Outsized Impact
I believe in the Netflix philosophy of “lead by context, not control”. Context allows you to empower your teams to create a larger impact, an opportunity that every high performer appreciates.
Your high performers’ relationship with you plays a pivotal role in their relationship with the company. It’s no secret that a large population of people leave and stay because of their managers. So, have your team’s back and communicate it to them. Give them the opportunity to take on audacious initiatives and make them feel comfortable to fall and fail.
Lack of Opportunities to be Heard
Top performers come with opinions and expect to be heard. They might not expect the feedback to be actioned upon all the time, but not getting a chance to share their thoughts can be disappointing and frustrating.
Lack of Alignment in the Company
Sometimes top performers feel that everyone is not focused on the key priorities of the company as much as they are. They start feeling that they are carrying more weight than others, which leads to them feeling burnt out.
As leaders we need to ensure that, while different people will have different levels of outcomes at work, the effort is aligned in the same direction.
These are some reasons why I feel top performers want to leave. What do you think are the top reasons for high performers to look for opportunities outside their organization?
Thanks for reading Scale it Up with Ishan! Subscribe to get an email whenever a new post comes out.