Do you know the leading cause of employee turnover? Poor management.
That’s right. More times than not, leadership is the problem for high turnover, and the negative impacts can be hefty:
- Great talent is not abundant.
- Training new employees takes time and effort.
- Dissatisfied employees underperform.
- High turnover weakened company culture.
- Hiring is expensive.
As with many workplace issues, it all boils down to one thing: communication. If communication is lacking, you’re bound to run into problems.
Consider this: communication is a two-way street. It requires both parties to commit to the act of listening, as well as speaking. Passive listening is a common trap we’re all guilty of; when you hear the words, but don’t process the message in any meaningful way.
Luckily, employees don’t expect their bosses to be perfect and are even willing to put up with some poor behavior if they believe there’s room for improvement. If an employee consistently feels like they’re not being heard, they’re likely to leave the company,
Becoming a better listener is simple. With the right commitment and awareness, you can effectively alter your current habits to become a better listener and leader and stop losing great talent.
Consider the following strategies for reducing employee turnover:
1. Repeat what you hear.
Repetition is a simple, yet effective memory and comprehension tool. Repeating what someone says to you will help you to absorb the message and apply meaning.
It also gives the speaker the chance to correct or confirm what you’ve said, helping to minimize miscommunication.
2. Be quiet.
Save your two cents for later; now it’s time to listen. Extroverts have an especially hard time just sitting tight and being quiet, but it’s in extremely valuable skill.
When your primary focus is when it’s your turn to speak, you’ll inevitably miss the message; this is also called passive listening. Switch your focus away and commit to not saying (or planning to say) anything!
3. Don’t multitask.
Multitasking is one of the biggest misconceptions of our modern society. What we make up for in quantity, we sacrifice in quality. In other words, you may be getting a lot done, but only to a subpar standard.
Next time you’re in a meeting or having a conversation, silence your phone, close your laptop, even save your coffee for later and simply commit to the task at hand: listening.
4. Make yourself available.
Employees crave access to their leaders, to share feedback, express concern, ask a question or seek guidance.
Are you making time for your employees? While you may not be able to operate with a 24/7 open-door policy, consider setting aside a few hours per week solely for discussion with your employees.
This strategy can bring to light issues or opportunities in the workplace you may have not otherwise learned.
Check out more ways to improve communication and create a thriving workplace:
- 6 Ways to Spot Employee Burnout
- How to Spot an Unhappy Employee
- How to Build a Positive Culture, People Want to Be a Part Of