Employee management

Sneaking Away: How to Respond When You Suspect an Employee Plans to Leave

January 17, 2019

You likely know the signs. An employee showing up to your business casual office in a suit, then taking the afternoon off. A sudden surge in sick days, although they seem fine and healthy. A new reluctance to take on any long-term projects. You might not observe anything at all, but hear the news through the company rumour mill that so-and-so has been taking calls from recruiters or was seen visiting one of your competitors’ workplaces.

Turnover is a fact of any organization. Sometimes you have plenty of warning; an employee may be open about looking elsewhere. On other occasions, though, a departure catches you completely by surprise and you are left scrambling to cover the sudden gap in your staff. And sometimes the employee hasn’t said anything about departing, but you suspect they already have one foot out the door. Is there anything you can do?

With some employees, news of their imminent (or intended) departure is no cause for panic. Maybe things weren’t working out, and a parting of ways seemed inevitable. Other employees are so necessary and so beloved that the very thought of their not being around anymore sets you clambering to keep them. Regardless, being caught in the limbo of not knowing what an employee intends to do can be tricky to navigate.

So, what should you do when you suspect an employee itches to depart? Download our FREE Halfway In, Halfway Out Guide, which includes advice for when you believe an employee might be on their way out the door.

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