Why Would You Want To Leave?

When employees make the choice to voluntarily terminate, the first and most logical question employers ask is, “Why?” Sometimes the answer is unrelated to job dissatisfaction, such as retirement, relocation due to a spouse’s job, or because of a family situation. Other times the answer is clearly related to job dissatisfaction. This is where employers ask, “Why would you want to leave?”

Employee terminations are a very real part of running a business. There are two basic types of termination – voluntary and involuntary. Voluntary terminations are employee initiated and occur when an employee resigns from their position for various reasons – retirement, relocation, or displeasure with current position.


Forbes recently published an article sharing the results of CEB’s Quarterly Global Labor Market research. According to CEB’s findings Stability, Compensation, Respect, Health Benefits, and Work-Life Balance appeared in the top five drivers for job seekers.


How do these drivers fit into your workforce? Do you know what is important to your employees? When you know what is important, you can use that knowledge in your efforts to develop an engaged workforce. Having an engaged workforce will substantially reduce the voluntary terminations resulting from job dissatisfaction. Allowing employees to participate in the design of a strategic plan, showing them their contributions have value, and respecting their need to feel connected to their work are possible ways to engage your employees.


As a leader it is important to remember that everyone finds meaning in their work in different ways. What motivates one person may be completely inconsequential to someone else. When leaders help employees understand how their work impacts the company, employees become more connected and more engaged. The more engaged your employees are, the fewer times you have to ask, “Why would you want to leave?”


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