Top 10 Ways to Guarantee Your Best Workers Quit | Be The Boss

Top 10 Ways to Guarantee Your Best Workers Quit

Mel Kleiman


Nov 03, 2017

10. Don’t make each new hire feel welcome and valued. Employees are most impressionable during the first days and weeks on the job. Every bit of information gathered during this time will either reinforce your new hire’s “buying decision” (to take the job) or lead to “New Hire’s Remorse” ----- especially if you treat them as just another cog in the wheel. (See my April 2016 First Impressions article for more on this.)

9. Treat everyone equally. While this may sound good, your employees are not equal. Some are worth more because they produce more results. Some prefer hands-on management while others would rather take the ball and run with it. The key, then, is not to treat them equally, but to treat everyone with respect and manage them the way they would like to be managed. It cannot be “one size fits all.”

8. Enforce dumb rules. I did not say enforce no rules, I said don’t enforce dumb rules. Great employees want to have guidelines and direction, but they don’t want to deal with rules that get in the way of doing their jobs or that conflict with the company’s stated values.

7. Don’t recognize outstanding performance. Remember Psychology 101: Behavior you want repeated must be recognized and rewarded immediately.

6. Don’t keep your people informed. If you don’t tell them what’s up, the rumor mill will. You’ve got to communicate not only the good, but also the bad and the ugly.

5. Don’t develop an employee retention strategy. Employee retention deserves your attention every day. Make a list of the people you don’t want to lose and, next to each name, write down what you are doing or will do to ensure that person stays engaged and on board.

4. Tolerate mediocrity. A-players don’t have to or want to play with a bunch of C-players and they will come to resent the need to carry the load for any slackers you keep on payroll.

3. Don’t do employee-retention interviews. Instead, wait until a great employee has walked out the door and conduct a posthumous exit interview to see what you could have done differently to keep that person on board. (Talk about closing the barn door after the horse is out!)

2. Don’t have any fun at work. Who made the rule that says work has to be serious? The notion that work cannot be fun is actually counterproductive. The workplace should be fun. Find ways to make work and/or the work environment more relaxed and enjoyable and you will have happy employees who look forward to coming to work each day.

1. Micromanage everything. Squash creativity and innovation in the bud by telling them what they need to do and exactly how to do it. Don’t tell them why it needs doing or why their contributions are important. And, above all, don’t ask for their input on how it might be done better.

Certified Speaking Professional Mel Kleiman is North America’s foremost authority on how to recruit, select, and retain hourly employees and president of Humetrics. Founded in 1976, Humetrics provides employee selection and retention tools as well as speaking, training, and consulting services. Mel is also the author of five books including the bestseller, Hire Tough, Manage Easy. For more information, visit or call (713) 771-4401.