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Why don’t your employee turnover initiatives work?

Organizations tell me all the projects and initiatives they are doing to reduce their employee turnover. Most of what they are doing is irrelevant, expensive, time consuming and most importantly – don’t work! Many of the ideas come from what their competitors were doing. Though the organizations do not share the same cultures, business plans, demographics and many other elements they are using cookie cutter employee turnover plans. As you can imagine - they don’t work.

The plan itself may or may not be sound. But at the very least the strategy must be reviewed for relevance to the organization. If relevance is found – then the plans and actions must be reviewed and adjusted for the differences between the organizations. Competitors will share some but not even a majority of the issues that will affect how the plan is communicated, implemented, evaluated and adjusted over time.

Many times I have been told by well-meaning business owners and CEOs “they have to match what their competitor is doing to stay competitive”. I then ask them about the turnover the competitor is experiencing. They always responded glowingly that “the competitors’ turnover is worse than ours!!” The moment the words escape their mouths they realize their mistake.

As the VP of Human Resources with four companies in four different industries many times we did the opposite or something quite different then what our competitors were doing. More than once we were ridiculed for what we were doing – until our employee turnover started dropping. Can you guess what happened next? Of course, our competitors started copying what we were doing – and made the same mistake as discussed above. They did not adjust for the differences between our organization and theirs. Many times their employee turnover got even worse. Clearly, we did not have a problem with THEIR turnover going up! J

People Profits Principles

The best employee turnover strategies:

  1. Costs little to nothing beyond the cost of implementation
  2. Deals directly with one of the leading employee pain points
  3. Contributes quickly to the reduction of employee turnover
  4. Leads directly to increased revenues and profits

How many of your current employee turnover initiatives would meet ANY of the above criteria?