Management has a major role to play in keeping employees engaged and motivated; thereby, bringing the best performance out of the employees and boosting the overall growth of the company. Some studies suggest that a major source of the employees’ motivation is their managers. However, poor management can have an overwhelmingly negative effect on the employee and cause lasting damage to the organisation by leading towards a toxic and monotonous work atmosphere.
There can be several reasons for an employee to quit an organisation – lack of growth and progression, work overload, lack of feedback, little or no opportunity for decision-making, lack of reward or compensation, poor fit for role, etc. Other than these common reasons, poor management or bad leadership has erupted as one of the major reasons behind high employee turnover. Ignorant and dogmatic attitude of a manager results in increased stress and anxiety level in the employees; thereby, forcing them to quit the job.
High employee turnover is not only costly for an organisation but it also impacts hugely on the overall productivity. Too many employees leaving within a short period also damages the reputation of the business. Further, recruiting new employees, training them, and making their skills at par with the experienced professionals, is also a time-consuming and costly affair. Even after that, a bad manager can have a similar negative impact on the new joinee.
Thus, the company should keep a close eye on its managers too and if bad leadership is resulting in high employee turnover, take adequate steps to mitigate the situation. Let’s explore some of the ways to fix a poor leadership problem, which will eventually result in faster growth of the company with more output from the employees.
Spending time with employees
Managers or leaders should take a holistic approach in ensuring accountability, transparency and proper coaching from their side to keep an employee engaged. Though regular one-to-one meetings might not be possible for a manager with a bigger team size, overall engagement and interaction should be a common practice to create a healthy work culture. The leadership should always be aware of how the employees feel about their workplace environment and culture. This can be possible through regular interactions, which need not be personal; professional conversations also provide a good manager with the insights of the thought process of an employee and help to motivate and encourage him.
Leading by example
There can be several hurdles in dealing with challenges associated with time management, change management, performance issues, reorganisation, inconsistent communication, etc. In many instances it gets trickier to prioritise tasks and most employees might panic in such situations, which will lead towards under-performance. One of the best ways for managers to handle such situations is to set an example by handling the situations by themselves first. This way the employees can get motivated and inspired and are more likely to not quit the job out of stress.
While there is a common trend to hunt for external reasons when a company faces high employee turnover, there is an undeniable possibility that the reason can be something from within the country. Erroneous leadership has often erupted as the answer to who was the cause or whose inaction was the cause behind the high employee turnover. In such scenarios, companies can try to fix the problem from inside by providing leadership training and discussions. However, when a manager is responsible for a large number of employees, especially talented employees, leaving the company, it is more feasible to replace him with a new manager who will fit the vision and goals of the organisation.
To determine whether the attitude of a manager is indeed inappropriate and making the work environment toxic, a single feedback from one employee might be misleading. Hence, company heads should consider taking regular feedback from every employee to determine whether the manager’s leadership can result in employee turnover. While at times verbal interaction on such topics might not be comfortable for an employee, an alternate channel of communication can be opened where employees can share their thoughts and disagreements through an anonymous form – which will mitigate the fear of judgement among the employee.
While it is a common norm to put what the employee owes the company at prior, it should never be ignored what a company owes to the employee. In most instances of high turnover rates, employees have been witnessed to have been treated badly by the company. Good leaders should reflect on how they can make the workplace workable for the employees by treating them the way they deserve.
Consulting a third-party for leadership training can be expensive but helpful for the company in the longer run as they can provide a fresh perspective and unbiased feedback. Leadership training programs are a key component of effective operations as they significantly improve the skills of the existing leaders in the company.