The myth of the silver bullet

We all want to believe in the power of the silver bullet. We just have to do this one thing and everything will get better. When it comes to employee turnover – there are no silver bullets. My experience is employee turnover solutions are the opposite of a silver bullet. They are a laundry list of policies, plans and actions which result from a well-developed strategy.

You hear examples of a silver bullet:

  1. “We just have to work on issue “X” and everything will be fine”
  2. “We have just purchased this new employee benefit which everyone is going to love”
  3. “We are giving an across the board pay raise”
  4. “We are hiring a new recruiter”

Each of these can be part of the problem and solution

How many times have you had an organizational problem fixed with a simple solution? My guess is never. It always takes:

  1. A thorough review of the facts
  2. The courage to reject an easy answer
  3. A solution with a minimum of changes but huge impact.

Every organization I have ever dealt with says “oh we tried this” or “we tried that”. I have never heard anyone tell me about a multi-faceted plan that directly dealt with the numerous root causes creating their employee turnover.

The one thing they tried was PART but not ALL of the solution

You can spend a lot of time, money, and effort on silver bullets that don’t solve the problem. Many times the money is completely wasted as no discernable impact has been made on your turnover. All you will receive are the expense of the wasted effort and frustration for you and the employees.

Employers are always amazed at how much employee turnover can be reduced without any cash expense. Yes, there is a cost in time and effort – but there should also be a nearly immediate impact showing the effort is worth it. Your time and effort should also go down as you learn what works and what does not.

You can continue to make ad hoc changes without any significant change in your employee turnover. The alternative is to have someone on your side who has been there and done that and can show the results.