When Your Lose Your Highest Producing Employee

Every business’ dream is to employ high performers. These days, talent is not enough without productivity. Imagine your team has a few or several highly-productive members? Great, right? Your business is on the right track and well on its way to achieving all its goals in no time.

Think again.

When your team has several high performers, it is very tempting to fall into the assumption that everything is fine. But then again, a smart business owner will never neglect to keep his or her “finger on the pulse” of these star players, so to speak. While they could be highly motivated and positively productive in the workplace, there is a high chance that they are on the lookout for further opportunities outside. This could be due to a variety of reasons you could be overlooking in the home front.

Employee burnout is a top culprit in turnover. Of course, when an employee has a very healthy productivity, you would trust him with the more sophisticated tasks. Be wary. The sheer volume of expectations on a single person’s shoulders may push this individual to becoming passively overloaded. Rotate, delegate, and reward. And make sure everybody has all the tools they need to function well.

Feelings of being un-appreciated or under-valued pushes any mid-performing employee away. Moreso your star players. When employees work hard, simple recognition from superiors go a long way in keeping the employees engaged. Just remember that different personalities respond uniquely to appreciation.

“Uninspiring” work environments also nudge employees towards turning their sights onto the other side where the “grass could be greener”. When employees feel that they are unessential to a greater good, they will tend to look for places where their efforts will feel more of a contribution to the bigger picture. What’s more, it is very difficult for any individual to work at maximum potential when there is no promise of growth of any kind in the forseeable future.

Monitor motivation levels at work. Because this is a more complex dynamic of employee engagement. Disengagement of any kind is not something that can be cured with a silver bullet. And the more it is neglected, the more likely that it can spread like a virus among the “healthier” members of the team. Promote a work environment where every single person feels that they are “heard” and can each make a difference.

These are important to remember because, at the end of the day, losing your high performer or performers who deliver an approximated 400% more productivity than the average, will have a huge impact on your business’ bottom line. Replacing any employee can set your business back about as much as twice their annual salary. Sure, there is a high unemployment rate out there and you can certainly find replacement staff who are willing to do the same job for less. But the cost of training and/or on-boarding alone of new employees who will deliver about just as much productivity as the high performer you lost is more likely a red on your periodic revenue reports. It is still substantially better (and profitable) in the long run to hire AND retain the best people and keeping them engaged. Go ahead and keep a short-term labor force for certain tasks or areas of the business. But it still pays to make sure that your key positions are staffed with well-compensated individuals who are aware of their value to and are invested in the business.

Hang on to your best performers by improving engagement. Do so by utilizing their skills optimally and continuously developing your talent pool’s skill sets. Listen to and enforce employee ideas or suggestions in the workplace whenever feasible. Assure them of growth and make good on these assurances. When you keep business practices consistent to enabling your employees’ individual and collective success, you can hold on to your top performers for longer.