If you’re going to build a People Magnet Machine, a culture in your business that attracts the right people like a magnet, you must understand the real reasons people leave their job.
Perhaps they tell you they leave for higher pay, but the data doesn’t support that in most cases. Instead, according to Leigh Branham, there are seven real, hidden reasons people leave.
This week we discuss those seven reasons and what you must do to address each.
The 7 Hidden Reasons Employees Leave
Episode 54 – The Growth Whisperers
The Growth Whisperers is a weekly podcast hosted by Brad Giles and Kevin Lawrence two advisors to mid-market businesses, one Australian, one Canadian, who each work with CEOs and Leadership Teams across the world with a mission to build enduring, great companies. Each weekly episode covers interesting situations and questions from the world of strategic planning, leadership development, talent and hiring in high growth entrepreneurial companies where real results matter.
Kevin Lawrence 00:13
Welcome to the growth whispers podcast where everything we talk about is building enduring great companies. This is a passion that Brad Giles, my co host, and I have, in terms of companies that are able to endure and endure for decades, generations. It’s kind of exciting stuff for us. It might not be exciting for others, but we like to learn and share the best things that we learn. And that’s what we do here in this podcast. So I’m Kevin Lawrence, as I have already mentioned, my amazing co host, Brad Giles down there in Australia. Good day. How are you doing?
Brad Giles 00:46
Good, how are you today?
Kevin Lawrence 00:59
I’m good. I’m doing really well. Had a good workout this afternoon. I kind of had an easy morning, and intended to get out and didn’t and had a good workout this afternoon. And it’s amazing how much better my energy and how much better I feel after a good workout. So yeah, that’s good. I feel really good. And I’m been my nature path was suggesting I try this keto diet thing. I hope do a reset in my system. So it’s like, not even minimal carbs, but like vegetables, and protein and fat and it’s so strange to be focused on eating fat. When you know, you’re conditioned to think it’s bad for you so unexpected. They say lots of great things happen when you do this for a period of time. It’s almost like a it’s like a different version of a cleanse by just eating copious amounts of animal and other protein. So I’m feeling energetic, as well. So yeah, it’s good. How are you? How are you doing today?
Brad Giles 01:58
Oh, I’m very good. I’m very good. Just had four days down south three hours south of Perth here in the wind and surfing region of Margaret River. And yeah, it was it’s autumn here. So it was just great to get away in the call the forest. Yeah, had a really good break and eager to get back into it. So tell me, what’s your phrase or word for the day, every day? You know, for the listeners benefit. We begin with a word or phrase best practice that we suggest in opening meetings camp, what’s your word or phrase for the day?
Kevin Lawrence 02:38
mine is a combination of a grounded reset. You know, it was actually a pretty crazy week last week for a whole bunch of reasons. It was crazy. And I feel like instead of getting a town spent some time just to kind of reset things. And I needed that and when it you know, incredibly busy time to set up and so it’s like a grounded reset. So I’ve reset. I’ve refocused and I know what I need to do. And I’m kind of excited about getting it done. So yeah, a grounded reset. And I know it doesn’t sound maybe exciting, but sometimes things get a little hairy and a little crazy. And yeah, I feel pretty good about it. So that’s me. How about you, Brad? What’s your word, your phrase of the day.
Brad Giles 03:26
So what happened here last week in Australia. Regarding the Coronavirus. Is the federal government put all of its resources into this AstraZeneca
Kevin Lawrence 03:40
Brad Giles 03:40
they did. Yes, they did. All of its resources. So they bet. Basically, the whole population’s vaccination on AstraZeneca a year ago, or let’s say, six months ago, and they pre-ordered and did a whole range of things. And then there’s obviously a problem with blood clotting now. So this past week, they’ve had to say, we are now only going to have people who are under 50 to be vaccinated. Sorry, only people under 50 cannot be vaccinated using AstraZeneca.
Kevin Lawrence 04:21
Mostly bad for people of that age. Wow.
Brad Giles 04:25
it causes blood clots because the body overcompensates the immune system overcompensates, and it kind of goes into hyperdrive or overdrive and then creates these blood clots. So that kind of that, in the back of my mind made me think about the immune system of an organization and so my word is the body ejects the virus. When Jim Collins was writing good to great there was a group of researchers judges that were in a meeting and one of them said, the people who are a players in these organizations, these great organizations, it’s like they were hired in. And they just if they don’t fit, it’s like the body injects the virus. So yeah, that’s my phrase today. The body’s awesome. Yeah,
Kevin Lawrence 05:23
well, you know, you know, and if there’s a really grounded reset, sometimes that can cause you to reject stuff, right? You can, you can inject the good, or the bad story and bring in more good you like, I bring it together, reset and ends up objecting to revive virus and all the bad stuff. When leaders are grounded and focused, they get rid of the bad stuff, and they make room for good stuff, man, where we didn’t even talk about it. But we’re really I feel like a rapper like we’ve been two sentences together. Anyways, yeah, well, essentially, but I love the idea of injecting the virus and I love watching it happen. Yeah, interestingly, that ties into today’s show, because sometimes the virus ejects itself. That is when someone joins a company and they don’t fit or they don’t love it, they, pull the ripcord and they self eject out of the company. And that’s what we’re talking about today. Today, we’re talking about when people decide, enough of you, I’m out right now, whether they’re like a fighter jet pilot that feels like they’re flying into a mountain, and they’re gonna pull the ejector seat and parachute out before they crash, or before the company crashes, or they’re just sick and tired of their boss. We’re talking about that today new, interesting stat for you to think about when it comes to why people leave. Man, do people bs themselves about why their people leave them. And there’s a funny saying is that, you know, people don’t leave companies, they leave managers. And we have data to back it up. Author Lee brown wrote a book seven hidden reasons employees leave, it’s kinda like a secret book that I tell people about, they usually haven’t heard about it. And it’s amazing. And what they found in close to 20,000 interviews, and I’ve verified this through our own discussions with teammates that we’ll talk about that more. But when people leave a company voluntarily, most people think they got pulled away by more money. And that’s almost always a lie. That is not they may have told you that are a whole bunch of other things. But that’s almost always a lie. Now, it’s a convenient lie. Because then you don’t have to feel like you did a crappy job. You can blame it on the other company, but it’s actually not true. And the stats are, is that 89% of managers believe people are pulled by better pay. Generally, the data in the research here shows that close to 90% of the time it’s something other than money was the root cause of why they know the end, they might have been pulled by a few bucks. But it wasn’t the few bucks. There’s these other things in this brilliant book called seven hidden reasons why people leave which we’re going to dig right into today. So we are not kidding ourselves. Yeah, absolutely.
Brad Giles 08:27
If you are listening to this, and you have a person who has recently left you and you’re telling yourself that perhaps what’s happened is they left because they got a better offer or though, you know, the data is telling us that there’s a nine out of 10 chance that that’s just not the case. 90% chance that that’s just not the case. So I want to I really want to dig into one part from the book. paradise fire right now. But what it’s saying is that this disconnect between 89% of managers believe that people are pulled away by better play pay, but in actual fact, it’s other reasons. Okay, so this is the phrase that I love from this book, this astounding disconnect between belief and reality allows managers to deny responsibility for correcting and preventing the root causes of employee disengagement.
Kevin Lawrence 09:34
Yes, it is. And that’s what drives me crazy because I’ll be in meetings all day went because I got paid more, which completely stops the managers an organization’s ability to learn and get better. It’s an easy scapegoat to not dig into the root cause and you guys know I’m getting excited about this because when we lose good people, to me, it’s a massive sin serious problem and it’s like an undeniably undefendable error like it, I mean, we all mess up. But it’s but if we get to the root of it and you know what’s interesting? No Brown, what I found is that, you know, when I talk to key people in companies we work with, and we’ll, we put a lot of time and energy recruiting and building key leaders in these companies. And when people come over, I’m always curious, they always ask them, why did you leave? And guess what, they always state one of the damn seven on this list, it’s never money. Even better, you know, I’ve had many leaders that I’ve worked with, that have been offered over the time. 5100, sometimes 150% more money. And when they don’t go ask the same question, why did you say, yeah, and they get one of the seven reasons, or are multiples of the seven reasons usually when they say why they stay. So that’s real life data, it’s convenient to think it’s money makes you feel better if you lose a good person. But, you know, the research says different. And when you go and dig in, and you know, our firm, even we do exit interviews, sometimes for clients when they lose, you know, a player’s when we dig in, it ain’t money. But I will tell you, I do believe that they sometimes will say that, because it’s a very nice way not to burn a bridge, if I worked for you, Brad, instead of sitting down and telling you that you’re a jerk. And a word that starts with an A, that’s not a player, instead of telling you that and having you hate me forever, I can make it a convenient excuse around compensation. And that way, I’m not burning a bridge, I don’t have to, you know, have conflict with you. And you know, I can, we can both save face. But it’s wrong, because we’re missing out on the root causes of why we lose awesome people that are so critical to our organization. Now, if they were one of those viruses, ie someone that wasn’t a great fit. Well, that’s okay. Yeah, well, in all the other cases, it’s not an I have seen some catastrophic losses we’ve had in companies, and but this book is a great resource to try and minimize those. And for those of you focused on retaining your best people, this is an amazing book to understand the psychology of retention, because it really goes back into the psychology in disengagement, which eventually leads to people leaving,
Brad Giles 12:47
it’s just lazy. It’s just, it’s a lazy excuse to say money, because as that sentence said, it allows managers to deny responsibility. And if someone is saying, oh, that person left, because of PE, the first response should be E. But what’s the real reason? What’s the real reason
Kevin Lawrence 13:09
and that’s the culture we want to build into companies is, that may or may not be what they said. But let’s figure out the real reason, because we know there’s more to it than just that. Yeah, the money is not and it’s fascinating how money is not the powerful source, we think it is in a lot of things. So interesting. Before we get into the magic seven, you know, they also know the author talks about the, the process of disengagement. And what he talks about is it’s almost like people gradually walk down the stairs, like they’re walking down stairs towards the ocean. And then they get lower and lower levels of disengagement. And they wonder why am I here? It’s just increasing levels of frustration till it gets to the point more metaphorically, it’s like, the straw breaks the camel’s back. There’s just so much weight on them, and so much pressure that they just say, you know, peace out, I’ve had enough, you know, I’m going to go and take this job for two bucks more.
Brad Giles 14:09
I remember a similar example, I was studying in Boston many, many years ago. And there was an Electric Code, Doctor general bill leadership expert, from, I think, from the southern US and he, he had this one slide that was just fantastic. He said, people need to be proud of their company, they need to be proud of their product. They need to be proud of manager and they need to be proud of their team, or else they will eventually leave. And that isn’t what we’re talking about today. But it’s very similar if people are leaving because of pay. Mike, one of my questions is well are we giving them something to be proud of across Those four areas,
Kevin Lawrence 15:02
it’s sometimes even when people ask for more pay. And I’ve seen it where sometimes the more pay is relevant for their role. But sometimes it’s because, you know, I don’t like my manager, I don’t like my team, I’m not proud of the company, so you better sure as heck pay me a ton of money to justify me rotting my soul in your organization. Right. And that I’ve seen that often, it’s just, it’s almost like danger pay, you know, for those people that work up on the, on the power lines, or on the top of skyscrapers, you know, straggling metal beams. You know, back in the old days, it’s almost like they want danger pay to deal with all the crap. And again, that’s not i’m not saying that’s true in your company, I’m just saying we need to be aware of these things.
Brad Giles 15:43
Many, many years ago, we had a, I had a saying amongst other people, which was that a pay rise only lasts a week. And what that means is that after a week, it’s nice to see your pay packet increase. But then you go back, and you’ve got to deal with the day to day problems of effective organization. So even if
Kevin Lawrence 16:03
your manager is still a jerk, even though you’re getting an extra buck an hour, a couple 100 bucks a month, your managers still a jerk, or your computer still doesn’t work properly, or the workplace is not comfortable, or your chair is no good, or your co workers are whatever it happens to be. And you’re right. It’s fascinating, you know, there’s a whole thing around compensation strategy. And around compensation strategy. It’s interesting, many companies that we work with, that have outstanding cultures as part of what makes them great. Well, they pay fairly, they’re not at the highest paying jobs in the market, and they’re not the lowest, they’re generally somewhere in the middle. But part of the thing is, is they have such a great culture, you know, people are happy to work for their money. You know, it doesn’t need to be the best in the industry in some cases. Because if there’s other benefits, it’s like, you know, half of the value in the job is the paycheck. The other half is the intrinsic stuff that makes you feel good about yourself and other things, which we’ll get into here. So should we jump into our seven amazing reasons, Brad?
Brad Giles 17:05
Let’s do it. So Reason number one, the job or workplace was not as expected. And then the data around this is that about 35% of American workers quit in the first six months. 35%. Wow, that’s a lot of energy and recruitment fees
Kevin Lawrence 17:29
and pain, headaches, disappointments, can you imagine both sides lose in the old? To me, this is like the good old bait and switch. Yeah, we’re it’s this and it’s either overselling it in appropriately selling it ignorantly selling it and not knowing. No, it’s interesting. As a side note, we own some companies, they’ll get people to talk to key employees to get a sense of what it’s like, you know, when we do interviews for executives, we want to understand the environment they’re used to, and that they have thrived in or not liked to see if it matches and even even even in our own firm, or a small boutique firm. But we when we bring people on, we tell them upfront, hey, it’s intense here. Hey, there’s very high expectations of quick responsiveness. And even Hey, our weekly meetings are Monday nights at 6pm. Yes to 530 or six 5:30pm 5:30pm in the evening on Mondays, which is on the west coast. But if you’re on the East Coast, that is 8:30pm. So our guys on the East Coast work from 830 till 10, every Monday night on our weekly team meeting. And but it’s one of the first things we tell people, even though on our support team, here’s what you’re gonna be signing up for. And if that’s not okay, you know, that’s okay. But this is what you’re signing up for. And so there’s no, that would be a very ugly thing to find out after you took a job.
Brad Giles 19:01
I mean, yeah, for sure. And that feeds into but if you’re up front, then that’s okay, that feeds into the job or workplace was not as expected. And why is that? It’s often because people say, what are we going to do? People, hiring managers or people who are responsible or like, we’ve just got to get someone in as quick as possible, because this job isn’t being done. You know, in my book made to thrive. I outlined the five roles of a CEO and that is accountability, Ambassador culture, strategy, and succession planning. And that feels the role of a leader succession planning. Within that there’s a concept that I draw from a book called top grading, which is the virtual bench and, and for key roles. You’ve got to have people that you’re talking to already people who could potentially make it so that you don’t have this situation, which is what are we going to do, we’re in strife. We’ve got MTC, we need to just get someone in there because then if they one of the 35%, that leave within six months, you just you’ve just got a revolving door.
Kevin Lawrence 20:10
It is. So yeah, and that’s a case of some cases where that’s the case, Brad, we’re just so desperate to get someone. And sometimes there’s some ugly things in the company that people aren’t comfortable telling others is just mismanagement, people actually don’t paint a clear enough picture of what this place is like, to make sure it’s like, it’s almost like, you know, we’re selling them a car. And it’s like, they say, I want something that has four wheels, and can get me to work. And then we actually believe that that’s okay. Versus further helping them understand what we sell this type of car, for this type of price. With this kind of warranty, this kind of gas mileage and trying to match, you know, it’s been in the carpet to talk about but you know, they say there’s, there’s a button for every seat, putting the right person into the right car, versus just having them take the job and find all kinds of stuff that doesn’t work. So, again, that’s, that is preventable. We can and we can, you know, refine over time, and we’re never perfect. How do you refine overtime to make sure you paint a clear picture of what the jobs like. And in your interview process, make sure that you’re assessing yourself, whether they will naturally fit within your environment. So that’s number one. job or workplace wasn’t always it was a bad surprise, or a good old, unintentional usually, bait and switch. So number two, the mismatch between the job and person? Yeah, which we’ve touched on a little bit, but in the right job. And you’re the one I see all the time a lot, is someone who is very, very social with an outgoing social personality, in a disc profile, they’d be high on AI or higher on AI would influence. And then you put them in, they put them into a role that’s solitary. And they’re supposed to sit there and work by themselves all day, and they would be absolutely miserable, or a person who’s been a very powerful individual contributor, and we put them into a manager role. And not only do they not even that, and they haven’t built the skills, yet, lots of people can learn to manage, you know, they may or may not want to do it, but they actually don’t have the skills to be a manager. And if you don’t like managing people, and don’t have the skills, it would be an absolute nightmare. And you would hate it. And it’s hard sometimes, for people to leave those promotions and go back into individual contributor role, which is something that we see a lot. Well, it’s
Brad Giles 22:37
about getting the right people on the bus in the right seats. So you got to make sure that the people who are in your organization are in the right role for them. And that comes back I guess, to degree with the reason one as well to considering the hiring process to be you want to spend more time hiring, and less time firing, you want to spend more time up front and the way that that translates when it’s been a little while now. But the that I have conducted interviews is I might say, Kevin, thanks for coming in today, we spend a bit more time than everyone else that you may be interviewing with, because we see that we want to get you into the right role. And if it’s not with us, then that’s okay. But we see it would be a great disaster, if we got down the path. And you were in a role that you didn’t feel was right for you, or we felt you went right for the role. So we spend more time to make sure that this is the right fit for you. Because it’s going to be a disaster for you if you come on board and then leave and it’s going to be a disaster for us as well. So we want to avoid that disaster.
Kevin Lawrence 23:50
Yeah, absolutely. And we’re again, very similar. We prefer to use that verbatim in the companies that we do a lot of hiring with, you know, for using that top grading methodology. Because you know, and whether it’s an internal promotion or a new hire, same thing. So basically, before you offer someone a job, particularly even an internal promotion, double and quadruple check, are they going to thrive and be naturally a good fit Not, not whether they want the job or not that if they want it, that’s a good start. It doesn’t mean that they will be capable at it. And again, it’s our job to really see Do they have this competency that the ability proven abilities to thrive in that role? Or are we going to crush them, whether it’s an external person coming in or not? That’s why these people decisions are so critical, particularly even the internal promotions, they’re excruciating. So now that one makes sense, right? The person knows they’re in the wrong job. This is painful. They don’t see a way out. One, they don’t see another opportunity. or two. They don’t want to take a step back down again. Sometimes is the case. A little Pretty high success rate of getting people to make a change, you know, most people, if you can allow them to save face, you can make a change if there indeed is a more suitable role if there isn’t, that’s kind of a tough one. So, number two mismatch between a job and a person, they’re in the wrong seat. And they often quit because they don’t see a way out. And if we leave it too long, they will quit. Sometimes we can proactively address it, but you’ve got someone that’s there in the wrong seat, you know it, they probably know what how do you address this in a way that is the most humane?
Brad Giles 25:35
Yeah, and then on to number three, there is too little coaching and feedback. So people number three reason that people becoming disengaged and leaving jobs is that there’s too little coaching and feedback. So I love this. I love this, this quote from the book, it talks about people or managers giving feedback once a year. So imagine that it’s like a basketball coach telling his players at the beginning of the season, you’re gonna go out and play 30 games. And then at the end of this season, I’ll evaluate your performance. Like, it’s ludicrous in the context of sports, okay? And that only highlights how ludicrous it is when you have an annual performance review. And there’s no coaching and feedback throughout. And, and so the employee thinks I’m not getting any better here, I don’t know if I’m doing the right thing. Or if I’m doing the wrong thing, how I just want to find a job where I can get some kind of understanding and feedback, so I can get better at the job and not wait another eight months into my annual review, or whenever it might be.
Kevin Lawrence 26:49
Yeah, it’s painful. And if you go into the world of sport, I mean, they do feedback between shifts, or between when the person’s playing and when they come off. Or if there’s feedback by the coach normally, all right, right away in that moment, whether it’s positive or improvement, you know, and when there’s breaks, you know, in one, number one, no matter what, whatever the sport is a break. So that would be it’s basically the best managers give feedback on a regular ongoing basis. But that doesn’t happen in a lot of places. A lot of people aren’t great at feedback, it’s a skill. And even in the book, the one minute manager just talks about how micro feedback is the key to success. And so there’s the ongoing feedback versus the once a year, and people just have no clue. You know, it’s, it’s interesting. In one of my clients overseas, they had me coach a number of the key executives in a very fast-growing company. It was a new CEO that was growing quickly, and the team so we’re, we’re coaching them all. That’s pretty intense. So that we had a real tight system to coach the executives, and keep them in sync with the CEO. There’s this triad model that works really well. But that the point of it is, is these, these executives were dying for feedback. And the shocking thing is the highest performers, usually assumed the worst. And it was almost weird. It’s like the low performers were kind of laid back about it. But the high performers were worried they weren’t doing good enough. And they needed it. And we did these simple 20-minute feedback sessions every quarter. So I sit down with the CEO to be here. And he and I would have prepared for an hour in advance for the entire team. And then the executive comes in executive spends, you know, six minutes saying how they’ve made great progress and what they would need to work on next. And then the CEO says, where they have seen great progress and what they think the executive needs to work on next. And as the coach, I’d weave that together into a, a simple mini plan for that executive for the quarter their growth, you know, what their growth goals were. And it was so basic, but the quality of the conversation was unbelievable. and the value of the executive God was on liquid, they were always so grateful. Because there was a mechanism that forced and it was only once a quarter, but it forced it and they loved it. And it also helped their growth. But people are just it’s for some people. It’s just not natural to give it but yet everybody wants it. And not knowing drives people nuts.
Brad Giles 29:19
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Again, the data that I did within my book, everybody wants the feedback that no one wants to give is the HR article about that.
Kevin Lawrence 29:31
I love that everyone wants the feedback that no one wants to give. Yeah, right.
Brad Giles 29:36
Yeah. And so they said, Do you want to receive positive feedback or you want to receive negative feedback? Or do you want to give positive feedback or do you want to give negative feedback, okay, and the, this was a survey and the outcome basically, was that the highest score is that no one wants to give Negative feedback. But everyone wants to receive negative feedback in the context of constructive criticism, not just having a go, are you? I believe that Yeah, so yeah. And the other quick note, I’ve done sales training before with sales teams, right? sales isn’t everybody, but it’s a great insight. And in sales teams, salespeople often never get to actually practice all of the practices that they do is with their manager. Sorry, it was with their potential customer. So they’re always practicing. And so we’ve done an exercise where we get three sales people together, one is trying to sell one is playing the customer, and one is playing the scribe. And they basically pitch to them over 10 minutes, and then rotate and then rotate. And it’s a really effective way to get them to practice. And it’s a form of feedback and coaching that they just otherwise wouldn’t get, and they crave. So short sales people aren’t every everyone, but it’s so important.
Kevin Lawrence 31:07
It is. And again, the best teams do lots of feedback, whether it’s between teammates, and from the coach, the best sales teams practice on roleplay. When we train people on trop grading, we practice roleplay feedback, it’s like two days of practice and role playing and feedback to help people get better and you watch people get better. It’s like, it’s a powerful thing. You just need to find ways to engineer it into systems and interesting. When we’re scaling companies, we force the at least quarterly feedback just to give people more chances to improve. And again, people want it you know, and, and, you know, and it’s even sometimes as simple as the positive feedback and Why thank you for doing that. Because simple things, but being very specific feedback makes a difference. Yeah, okay. Okay. So
Brad Giles 31:56
let us to reason for there are too few growth and advancement opportunities. So they have gotten into the organization or they’re in there a while and they realize my career isn’t going to go anywhere here. The people, all of the managers above me are lifers, or, you know, there is no opportunity to grow. And there is that from this, this reason that I love a recent survey asked employees to rate today’s managers on 67 leadership competencies, developing direct reports came in 67th. That’s, that’s unbelievable. That, you know, the job of a manager is to help the people around them to become better versions of themselves. Ah, you and
Kevin Lawrence 32:47
I know that Brad, that is not a commonly held belief by a lot of managers, a job of a manager is often obsessed with trying to get the work done and deliver on their goals. developing their people is kind of like thinking about polishing the hubcaps or the wheels in their car. Most people don’t even think about it. It’s they’re so busy doing they think their job is to drive the car, not polish it. Right, unless they love to do that most people are so busy doing their darn job. They forget their job is to develop people that fully forget. And I’m not saying it’s right, but it’s it, they just get lost in what they’re doing.
Brad Giles 33:26
The problem with that analogy, I like it, but the problem with that analogy, okay, is that if you focus your energy on divert and developing your direct reports, unlike a polished hubcap, it will have a massive impact on your team and the organization perfect.
Kevin Lawrence 33:43
So their job is to teach other they’re so busy driving the car they forget they should be teaching someone else. I’ll step it up. Thank you for the feedback. But great, what a wonderful example of feedback on the spot about Kevin’s mediocre analogy. So Kevin’s improved it. Because the driver you know, they realized they got to train other people to drive so they don’t have to see what works so well together. Brad, that’s awesome. I love it. And you know what I can tell by looking Brad’s face he didn’t even believe him. I realize he was demonstrating it, but I caught it. And I like feedback. So yes, it’s people get lost in it. And they forget, that’s why they don’t give the feedback. You know, and that’s a challenging thing. And going back to the advancement and opportunities, tying it back into this one. I think that the challenge here and what drives me nuts is when we lose good people because they can’t see the opportunities. Yeah, but they’re there. It’s like the company is growing at 30% a year, we’re expanding into another country and you can’t see the opportunity. And what I’ve learned over the years, is that you got to take out a map and you have to with a crayon or a pencil or pen, draw them the path from where they are to where they could be because it is off Then obvious to us, but they can’t see it. And it’s strange. And it’s not that different than looking at a total destroyed, old house that looks horrible from the street and even looks worse inside. Most people can’t see a shining palace, it could be like a renovation versus you can already see it in four seconds. But unless you have the mind of that person, you can’t see how this dilapidated house could become a palace. And the same thing with people is it some people can’t see from where they are today with those managers that they think are never leaving, they can’t see that growth opportunity. And we really, truly, we need to help them and paint the picture for them and almost walk them down the path. And I’ve seen people leave because of it and it’s infuriating.
Brad Giles 35:51
You don’t know what you don’t know. Okay, so the manager has seen that path be followed many times in many different ways, perhaps, whereas the employee has never been on that journey before. So they don’t know what they don’t know. And, you know, part of that is, like you said, illuminating that part saying to them, if you can do this, and this is, that’s how we can see your career growing, that’s how we can see you becoming better. You know, every year, there are a significant portion of the workforce who retire, or who leave the workforce. And there’s always young people coming up, it’s always churning over. So you know, there is a there is always opportunities that are arising.
Kevin Lawrence 36:44
And we know these things, but we often don’t communicate them and wrap them into them. That’s where we have an opportunity to help them. Awesome. Let’s, let’s so so basically, they don’t see the opportunities to grow. And, and, and sometimes they aren’t there. And often they are but they don’t see the clear path. And that’s where these, these career path exercises and development plans. And as our manager, there’s some great things that we can do there. So number five, feeling devalued and unrecognized. Now look, some people are devalued, that’s that might be the way that they’re being treated by their manager. And it happens and it’s horrible. But there’s also the unrecognized or, or under appreciated. And, you know, it’s interesting, and they talked about this in the book, but I see it myself. It’s, it’s the magic of saying, Thank you. And I appreciate it. Right. And, and, and it’s interesting, you know, one of the CEOs I work with, you know, at the end of his day, he would send a two or three texts, sometimes five texts to different people, thanking him for things that he had seen today and appreciate it today. Just a basic thing. Now, not shockingly, people, people loved him. Now you can go over it. And you know, it’s like, you can thank people for showing up. You know, you can thank people for sitting at their desk, and you can thank people for, you know, not adding value. That’s, that’s, you know, you need to thank people for their contributions, not just, you know, a ribbon for showing up. But it’s a go ahead Brad.
Brad Giles 38:15
Isn’t that the job of HR?
Kevin Lawrence 38:21
HR is the make people happy department. Yeah, people are supposed to this. There’s nothing they’re supposed to build the culture, make people feel good. And then fix my problems when my people drive me crazy, right? Yeah.
Brad Giles 38:44
They said, you know, some people recognize that. Some people believe that recognition is the job of HR. My job is to get the job done as a manager, and hrs job is to, is to recognize people. I mean, a lot of what you said about we send a text at the end of the day, or you know, it’s the little things that make the big difference. You know, because it makes people feel good every time I run a an offsite quarterly workshop, or planning workshop or an annual workshop. One of the things that we do his top thanks to teammates in the room. Yeah, that’s not necessarily a manager. Sometimes it’s a manager, sometimes it’s not, but everyone needs to participate. So I’m gonna thank Kevin for his help on the ABC project, or Jo, Jo n for her help on the x y Zed project. So it’s little points like that. Now you can build in all the time that makes them feel a valued part of the team in the absence of that is a desert of recognition. And you just don’t know, it’s not that people, I suppose people do need it. But it’s not that people need it in a needy way. But it’s just that people need to know that they’re valued. They need to know
Kevin Lawrence 40:16
want to be careful, you know, and this is not about, you know, a love fest, and every 30 seconds, you’re getting a thank you note, you know, it’s like, you know, some of the best CEOs, they have high expectations. And they think when there’s a job well done, but it’s not maybe every day or every minute, right. There’s acknowledgement, appreciation, and they often will push back and ask for better work. Right? So I want to be very careful. It’s not everyone gets a ribbon culture. And, and thank you for showing up. And I know you tried hard, it’s Oh, yeah, you know, there’s cultures where there’s real recognition. And if you look at sales organizations, and there’s awards like crazy for different things. So it just, it’s being conscious of it. And basically as my mom taught me, and my grandmother taught me, like, it’s like remembering your manners. Yeah, thank people, appreciate people and say the things that you think, and you’re still gonna give feedback, going back up to number three, giving feedback when things could be better, you know, I’d like a little more of this or a little less of that, or, you know, next time, could you Yeah, so but basically feeling devalued or unrecognized is a surefire way to kill someone’s spirit. So let’s go over six, six ones, a very interesting thing. Stress from overwork, and work life in balance now, and in my book, your oxygen mask, first, I first of all dispel the thing of work life balance, because it’s impossible. And for high performers, that never works. And the fact that the self should be in the middle your that your self is the driver that makes the success at work, and you know, creates life. But the point of it is, is that work consumes too much energy is the fact which we’ll agree with 1,000%. And there’s not enough left for them to be happy and healthy, and to have a great life. And they and they can really, this get too sucked into work and as a fine balance there. Because some of the highest performers do put in an extraordinary amount of energy into work more than normal. But sometimes it becomes a culture like in For example, I remember reading articles in Japan, where it was like, You weren’t allowed to leave the office tell the boss left. So people would sit there for hours and hours and hours and not even have work to do. But there was a social and this one article in particular about saying the whole country, a social pressure to put in long hours. And so that people couldn’t leave even though their work was done. And there’s an example there’s even though there’s a name for something, people who would die at work, because they spend too much time salary. Yeah, yes, yes, they talk about their so the point of it is, is that, you know, it’s just that people can’t live a decent life. And as a result, they’re like, I can’t do this interesting. One of in one of the covers over the work to this woman who was an A plus, plus, this woman was brilliant, insanely good, never missed a deadline on anything. And so one of the key executives in the company I worked with, and one day she quit. And holy did a few of us have a passionate debate about basically who messed that one up. And long story short, what came out is she was a perfectionist, high performer, who could never missed a deadline and could not do anything but Perfect, perfect work what she did better than anyone in a company. But it was destroying her life. So she couldn’t drop her standards and do less crappy work. She talked to her boss, she was actually a director. That was it was executives reported to she talked to her boss. We didn’t do anything about it. So finally, she had to quit to save face and her soul. She had no option but to quit. Yeah, because she couldn’t not deliver and then she couldn’t destroy herself and her family in the process. It was working out interestingly, thing it took a couple years they got her back, thankfully. But it was it was sad was also a stark reminder of the downside of these committed high performers. And when they start to let us know, it’s a bit too much. Like we got to be there to help them out and back them up and help them to reduce the stress and find ways to still have a great life by the way. Last point, Brad. It’s, it’s also why for our companies, you make sure all the key executives have goals for their own resilience and their growth, which just goes back to your oxygen mask first, in addition to their work goals, so that we keep the self goals on the radar because it allows them to stay healthy and resilient and not, you know, not get destroyed. But I’m sure you have some thoughts on this, Brad. So I get really excited about this one. It’s a guy. Yeah.
Brad Giles 44:58
So from the book of 70% of people Say that they don’t have a healthy balance between work and personal lives. 70% Okay, and 60% of people would give up some pay in exchange for more personal or family time. Now, does that mean that you need to turn to a four day workweek at your organization? Well, no, it doesn’t mean that. But it means that you’ve got to understand that 70% people say they don’t have a healthy balance. So how can you work with that? Now I’ve got a company that I work with, and one of their core values is about community. Okay. And, and we did this, we did this exercise, which is, do and do not? So it’s basically for the core values, saying how do you get to under get everybody in the organization to understand so do this, and don’t do that, that’s how you will live out values. So within community, what they said is, do not is missing the school assembly for your kids. And, and, and so that, in terms of their values is, is a great example of how you can do that. So school assemblies can be I mean, they don’t happen every day, but they can be quite important for some people. So if you’re at work, and you’re missing, something like that, for that organization, that’s a real letdown. So they’re kind of saying, what really matters to us.
Kevin Lawrence 46:32
And they’re helping to build it into the environment. So it’s socially acceptable. Many companies we work with have cultures where you’re encouraged to do those things. I mean, a lot of the company’s work was still really terrible. They’re people, they haven’t lost their soul yet. No, we catch them before they lose their soul, we try to get it all out of the damn thing. So they still care about it. And I think that’s important because, and sometimes people want to do it, but they’re afraid to look bad or look on committed or whatever it happens to be. So when you have mechanisms like that, that encourage it. It’s awesome.
Brad Giles 47:04
Well, if you if you’re an employee, just to close this out, if you’re an employee at that organization, you’re going to be thinking to yourself, Well, this is a long term job, like this is a sustainable job. They want me to be healthy on multiple levels, which is what we want.
Kevin Lawrence 47:24
It isn’t, there’s no kind of what we want for all of ourselves and our team. So yes, so stress from overwork, and work life balance, we got to keep an eye on it, we got to help people to make sure they take care of themselves and have room for what they want in their life. Even as I shared last week for our team, on our quarterly goals, we have our goals for work, our goals for ourselves, we also list out the most important things we want to achieve in life. Like we’ve got goals for the holistic person, because we know that you got to thrive on all of those to sustain success. So let’s go to number seven. And this is a bit of a sensitive one. It’s the reason why I actually stopped working with one of my clients, because in many ways, we’re like a bit of a you know, in many ways, like a team member, but it’s loss of trust and competence and senior leaders. And senior leader, we make mistakes all the time, you know, ourselves and then people we work with. But sometimes people do some things that people just No, it’s sometimes it’s a difference in beliefs about how you handle a situation. Yeah, that happens. I had, I had a CEO I worked with Jeremy was a good guy. Actually, I’ve had a few. But one is this, he was a good guy. I like him, I would still chat with him. But working with him, he did one thing, one day that I found out about something that he did. And I’m like, You’re not my kind of guy. And I’m not gonna disclose anything about what it was. But it was just like, I lost confidence in him immediately. Because of the way he conducted himself. It just it was Yeah. And that that created disengagement. In my case, I stopped the engagement. Because I don’t like that, you know, that just was something that I lost trust in Him. And in terms of his leadership, I’ve seen it with other people. And there’s so many things that go into building trust and confidence. And a lot of it is you know, doing what you say, you know, and just being a straightforward, good, good, good person, but no, trust is a big deal. And when you don’t trust people, you don’t want to want to hang out with them or especially working for them. Yeah.
Brad Giles 49:41
So one of my favorite reads each year just to go absolute full nerd on you is the Edelman trust barometer. So the Edelman trust barometer every year they do a survey all around the world. Most countries I’ll say so certainly OECD countries, but more countries and they serve a politics, media and business. And I think this year in 2021, business was the highest trust the CEOs was amongst their. But is the trust level in your organization higher than the average? That’s an interesting question to consider. And, of course, people, you know, people have a great struggle on this, to look in the mirror. And I don’t know that, depending on the size of your organization, it’s worth considering surveying it. But it’s, you know, what are you doing to undermine trust in your organization? Yeah. You know, the data from the book says that companies with higher trust levels, outperformed companies with low trust levels by 186%. So it’s, there’s a compelling reason to focus on trust, what undermines trust and how you can build more trust within your organization? Sure.
Kevin Lawrence 51:09
Like within a team trust is a big thing we work on, we’re building healthy executive teams, right? We do a ton of work around that. And that trust is a big component, which there’s things to help it. But there’s also this there’s a Stephen Covey’s son. And I think he wrote a book called The speed of trust. Yes. And, and, and, you know, there was one thing I took from the book. And it was trust allows for fast interaction, communication and execution, because you don’t have to document everything and CC the world to cover your butt because you don’t trust the person. You notice. When you trust something. You just have a five second conversation. Yep, I got it done. You don’t call the lawyer to document it. You don’t even send a darn email, you might make a note, but you know, you but when you don’t holy, let me think about it. Half an hour engineering conversation, 14 line emails and firm, please respond to confirm, maybe we get the lawyer, maybe we involve HR, maybe I double check with my boss, when you don’t have trust, everything gets weird and slow. It’s hard on the system. And it’s something that we don’t have interesting, one of our clients in India, you know, how you build trust in India? paying people on time. Yeah, like in Canada, It’s not even a question. But in different countries, it’s different than to literally paying people on time. Right? It’s also why some CEOs have a regular time that they address their companies, right? You know, and it’s also the other thing you got to think about, it’s also Who do you promote? Right? If you’re promote people that are seen as not being trustworthy, then that reflects on the companies all kinds of things they all point of it is understanding that trust is a big deal if people lose trust, and senior leaders, and senior leaders have to make controversial decisions and do things it can really have a massive ripple effect. So that is seven hidden reasons why employees leave and we will know Brad will kind of review them. But the key point here is, is that people don’t leave because of money. It’s number eight on the list. And it’s usually no less than 10%. The root cause is one of these other things, that psychologically or a combination of psychologically dislodge people and they start to disengage. And they kind of slipped down this the stairs of disengagement until they kind of wash it on the ocean. And we think they left for more money, but they just wanted to get the heck away from us is often the case. So number one reason that the workplace wasn’t what they expected. Number two, mismatch between the job and the person. Number three, they didn’t get enough coaching and feedback. Tell me more tomorrow, I’m doing well, but also tell me how I can improve. Next one is there are too many, there’s too few growth and advancement opportunities. Well, many not enough, they want to grow. They want those opportunities, but you got to help paint the path for them. Number five, feeling devalued and unrecognized. There’s not enough appreciation for what they’re doing, whether it’s by teammates or their boss. Number six stress from over work or work life and balance basically, or consumes too much energy, not enough room for them to have a great life. And last but not least, last but not least number seven. They don’t trust us the simulators we did something to break their trust, and it could have been a number of things. Hence why we look at engagement surveys and looking for the patterns. What’s the final thoughts before we wrap it up?
Brad Giles 54:42
Yeah, awesome. So again, that book is the seven hidden reasons employees leave, how to recognize the subtle signs and act before it’s too late. So I encourage you to take a look at that. And also, I guess, final point, understanding that if you’re saying people are leaving because of money, it could just be, it could just be that. In actual fact, that’s an excuse so that you don’t have to do the hard work and it is hard work. So yeah, so with all of that, um, thanks for listening. This has been the growth whispers podcast. And as always joined today by Kevin Lawrence, my co host. And you can find Kevin at Lawrenceandco.com and myself, Brad at evolution.partners.com.au. So thanks very much for listening. We hope you have a good week. We look forward to chatting again to you next week.
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