You’ve heard the adage: “People quit bosses, not jobs.” A Gallup poll of over one million employees supports the assertion, finding that a bad boss or immediate supervisor is the number one reason employees give for leaving their jobs. Although this is a valuable piece of insight, it’s more helpful to bosses to know why employees quit them.
High turnover is costly and time-consuming. An inability to retain long-term employees limits the competence of your staff and their investment in your organization. Understanding how to keep your workforce content, satisfied, and focused is essential to success. So, what types of behavior tend to send workers running from their bosses?
5 Bad Boss Behaviors
1. They overload their employees.
Sometimes you need your staff to go the extra mile for the team. Make sure, however, that you realistically consider the amount of work you’re expecting your employees to do on an ongoing basis. If you have cut staff and added duties to the remaining positions in the past, consider whether that work allocation is still appropriate. If you’re in a position to hire more staff to achieve a more reasonable workload, do it [Tweet this!] Workers who have a moderate workload most of the time are much more willing and able to give 110% when it’s crunch time.
2. They fail to respect employees’ time.
It’s temptingly convenient to be able to reach people any time of day or night, no matter where they are, and there may be times when you need to contact your employees outside of the regular workday. Expecting constant communication with your staff via text, email, or phone, however, can undermine their focus and motivation when they are on the clock. As much as possible, respect your employees’ personal time. They will be more fully present and ready to work when you need them.
3. They promote their favorites, regardless of merit.
Even if you don’t think you can be swayed by employees cozying up to the boss, we all have a natural inclination to surround ourselves with people who like us. It’s important to have an objective way of tracking employee performance, productivity, and accomplishments and to use merit-based criteria for promotion. Otherwise, you are likely to lose some valuable employees as a result of frustration over a lack of recognition for good work
4. They undermanage.
A “drive-by” manager can be just as frustrating as a micromanager. Communicate with and be accessible to your employees. If you are often out of the office, let them know how to get in touch with you while you’re away. Provide your employees regular feedback that includes praise as well as suggestions for how to improve their work. Getting them up to speed in areas in which they are lacking may be pressing for you, but leaving out what they are doing well can eventually wear away their confidence, motivation, and commitment to the organization.
5. They micromanage.
Your perfectionism may have gotten you noticed for the outstanding work you produced as an employee and helped you to rise to a position of leadership. If you can’t let go of the details that are now someone else’s responsibility, however, this trait will not serve you well as a supervisor of others. It’s important to provide guidance and support to your staff, but exercising too much control over their work can frustrate them and undermine their confidence. Encouraging your employees to take initiative and use their creativity will foster a more engaged and energized workforce.
The right HR software allows you to empower your employees. It should enable employees to effectively access and report on the important data that the company needs in order to run smoothly, making them feel like a valuable member of your company.
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