Very few people don’t like the fall. It is cooler then the summer and the real cold has not arrived. The temperatures vary and bring a change just about every day. In Oklahoma you can have 90 degrees today and 50 degrees tomorrow. The leaves start to turn; but they have not dropped yet. People seem to be happier and more content. All in all it is a good time of year.
Employers go through this same type of feeling with their employee turnover. Everything is good, no one is leaving and it is not as bad as it was. At the very same time nothing has changed. The good results are NOT the response to planned changes. The organization does not have higher employee engagement or productivity. In most cases, the good results are due to changes outside the company. Examples would be the economy is down, jobs are scarce or the chances for advancement are down.
Don’t be fooled by temporary positive changes unrelated to your organization
I have had countless conversations with business owners who are going through a temporary positive situation. They don’t see why they need help. Consistently, they are unable to explain what they did to cause the positive change. Six months later they are right back to a serious turnover problem, with constant recruiting and a bigger skills gap. That is when I hear back from them. Long term changes in employee turnover only come from structural changes in the organization.
You must be able to identify something YOU changed
In most cases, when the organization calls me back and I had previously identified their root causes – nothing had changed. The same root causes are still creating the same symptoms. Turnover is back to where it was originally. They had lost the opportunity during the positive time to make the necessary changes. They also lost the opportunity to pick up some higher caliber employees during the economic downturn. It is during these times when the better employers will cut loose their marginal employees. They will also concurrently pursue better employees.
These are the times when you look back and see where your productivity went up dramatically. The replacement of marginal with higher performing employees will result in higher productivity. One warning, you need to be aware of why the higher productivity employees are looking. Are they going to leave when the economy gets better or are they looking for a long term home?
How can we help?