“People Quit People, Not Companies”

This week, I was reminded once more that people leave managers, not companies.

A former colleague and I were catching up, and he was telling me about his new position. He seemed excited about the job; it was a sideways move but a fantastic opportunity.

As we started to discuss the new role, my friend kept making references to his old role, saying that too started out as a good opportunity, but it didn’t quite work out, and he hoped that wouldn’t be the case with the new role.

Pretty quickly our discussion moved on to the old role, and I started to ask questions about why he had left.

The old position sounded good, he always had good reviews, he had a good salary, and he was always in discussions for new opportunities, although they never quite seemed to work out.

Finally, I just asked, so what made you quit, and he said I just couldn’t work for my boss anymore, too many broken promises, and I just couldn’t trust him anymore.

I asked him how the old boss had taken it, and he said ‘my boss was stunned, couldn’t believe it after all the things he had done for me‘.

Clearly, there was a disconnect here, which ultimately led to the departure.

The purpose of this post is not to evaluate their relationship, but to highlight that even where we believe we have good relationships, where we feel we are doing a lot for our employees, it’s still important for us to meet the commitments that we make.

Most relationships are based on trust and this is a 100% thing, not a 90 or 95% thing, and when the trust is gone it’s very difficult to get it back. It could be lost over something, which to us seems very small, but which is unknown to us, is a big thing to our staff.

So have a look at your relationships with your staff, especially the people you rely heavily upon and try and subjectively evaluate the relationship from their perspective, put yourself in their shoes, and ask yourself, if you were their boss would you want to stay or to leave?

Be honest when you ask this question, and if you doubt that you would stay, then you could be in a position where one of your key staff is about to leave, or is thinking about leaving you.

Take the time to rebuild and repair that relationship before it’s too late.

If you want to learn more about creating highly engaged teams or being a better leader click the link to make an appointment to talk about how I can help.