People move on from their jobs for many reasons but there are only 2 real differentiators in those reasons:
1.) To move closer to something
2.) To get further away from something
Most employers would like to think that when they lose a key employee, it is because he or she found a substantial opportunity to advance his/her career…but that is not always the case. Don’t get me wrong, the candidates I speak to always talk about how they want to take a step in the right direction in their career and advance professionally and financially. However, some of these same candidates would settle for a step to the side, or a step back if it meant getting out of their current employment situation.
So, how does that happen? What elements of a working environment will cause a top producing employee to consider leaving their current employer even if that means not advancing his/her career?!
I have brainstormed with some other executive recruiters and I asked them, what are the most popular reasons that candidates conduct a job search when the primary motivator is to move on from their company?
Here are the top 7 reasons employees quit and look for new jobs.
1. No Clear Vision of Career Advancement: This is plain and simple. If an employee works hard, has success in their role, and is viewed as a company leader, that person should know their path in the company. Problems occur when that employee cannot clearly see the next step for advancement. This employee will begin asking themselves what is next. If they cannot clearly see the next step inside their company, they will seek that next step in another organization.
2. Compensation Package is Confusing: This is true for any sales professional. If he or she does not understand how they are compensated, they will not stick around to figure it out. It is important, as sales management, to explain how your salespeople can make their money. Without a clear understanding on how they can grow their personal revenue, they will not want to understand how to grow the company’s revenue.
3. No Sales Support: A sales team has many clients that they must support in order to grow revenue. Marketing and Support teams have only one client – Sales. In order to grow your sales team and company, you need the right tools and resources in place. If your sales team is not being supported through service, marketing, IT support, etc…they will leave and join a company that does support them.
4. No Leadership: This is a broad reason, but it covers a substantial amount. If upper management is too far removed from the sales team, there is a palatable disconnect and the team is unsustainable. If middle management does not go to bat for the sales team and the marching orders are not sensible, a sales team will not recognize and rectify a concern. If junior management does not understand company direction and does not effectively communicate with the team, they will lose belief and motivation. Simply put, if the leadership is not consistent and transparent, salespeople will recognize that and look to make a move.
5. Lacking Belief in Product: You can have the best culture, the best support tools, and unlimited resources to help your sales team to achieve their goals. But all is for not if the product/service does not work. Salespeople will soon feel the client feedback and move on to an organization that can deliver on what they promise.
6. Workplace Culture is Nonexistent: This is a factor that has become more and more common with job seekers. Your company can have an innovative solution with a growing and scalable model, but if your organization is a volatile work environment, you will lose talent. Compensation may be a driver for the job search, but in today’s competitive market, culture is a critical element. If the company and leadership team does not work to build a culture that employees enjoy being a part of they will consider new opportunities. The big danger for companies in this situation is that as soon as they see someone on the team move on, the rest of the team will get wise and get motivated to start their search.
7. Company Does Not Honor Commitments: At the end of the day, your employees are human and when a human loses trust in their employer, there is not much reason to stay. If you make a commitment to your employee, be sure to keep it. Whether it be an incentive, a spiff, or a promotion make sure you stay true to your word and follow-through. When you motivate your team, it’s important to have honest intentions. If your employees commit and accomplish the goal put in front of them, and the company does not hold up their end of the bargain, they will question every incentive put in front of them. They will look for a company that will simply do what they say. Do not take your employees for granted. You will lose the war on talent.
These seem like logical and simple reasons, but of course in the scale of an everyday work environment, they can be incredibly complex. Use this list as a cross comparison to the sales and work environment that you are trying to employ with your company. If you see overlap, then you may want to proactively consider some maintenance with you model. There is a strong possibility that some of your top talent is considering moving on to brighter pastures.
When you believe in and invest in your employees, they will believe in and invest in the company.