Main menu

What is your organizational resistance to solving employee turnover?

It is a crazy thought isn’t it? Why would anyone be against lower turnover? Every time I help someone with their turnover there are individual employees and groups of employees who are actively working against reducing your employee turnover. Let’s look at a couple.

  1. Bad employees
  2. The people who are currently charged with reducing turnover
  3. Middle management who may lose power with the new policies
  4. Anyone else who feels threatened

Bad employees feed on your employee turnover. You can’t get rid of bad employees as long as your turnover is out of control. As we all know, bad employees are the number one source of negativity in your organization. They will always be the first to determine what is wrong with something and how it is bad for the employees. They are literally running off your better employees - which increases their power.

When you have a major reduction in employee turnover it makes the current responsible party look bad - especially if it is done in ways which were rejected in the past. The more your turnover is reduced the more it makes them look bad and the more they will resist in one way or another. Any new ideas, strategies and policies will be deemed to be wrong and “won’t work here”.

As a Vice President of Human Resources for a service company we made some major changes which reduced our employee turnover. The problem was a group of middle managers used the old subjective procedure to acquire power over the employees. The new objective procedure eliminated that power. For obvious reasons the group of middle managers were strongly opposed to the new procedure.

These individuals or groups will never come out and discuss the real reasons why they are opposed. They will always present a false impression of their concerns. Many times their concerns will be hidden behind a veil of “the good of the employees”. The reality is their concerns are for their own self interests.

I have seen this many times, an organization stuck where they are with little to no progress. Any new ideas are evaluated not in an objective, “what is best for the company”, way but in a veiled review of how it will affect the above captioned parties. Many times a simple review of what they lose versus what they gain will blunt many of their concerns. You are playing to their very issue – their self-interests. Lastly, involving the current responsible parties in the new process will get them on board – because it will make them look good.

Turnover is fixable and can be managed to the benefit of all parties.