Warning signs every employee gives before quitting

Nine-month period is what it takes for employee engagement and employee loyalty to decline


An engaged employee is one who is emotionally committed to the organisation, he actively participates, is motivated and happy at work. Whether he is a team player or an individual performer, simply going to work is what he looks forward to.

His sense of accomplishment comes from work and he consistently progresses.

Everything that goes up, comes down! An engaged employee may not feel the same all the time. There can be phases when he feels a little less motivated. But if this phase stretches to a period of 9 months and employee engagement continues to fall – it can be warning signs that the employee may quit.

What does falling employee engagement mean?

A study by Peakon, found that both employee engagement and employee loyalty scores are strong indicators of an upcoming employee departure. Nine months before quitting, an employee’s overall engagement score begins to drop significantly. Why does employee engagement fall?

People leave unchallenging work, not a challenging workload

In particular, evidence suggests that employees are at greater risk of quitting when they feel they aren’t being sufficiently challenged. Interestingly, it’s not the amount of work that’s the problem. At-risk employees find their workload manageable, virtually up until the day they leave.

People leave when they can’t discuss pay, not because they feel they’re under-rewarded

This suggests that the ability to have discussions with a manager about rewards ties into an employees’ sense of self-worth—and supports their sense that the company respects them. This echoes the volumes of research showing that employees need to feel their managers care about them as people, and are willing to support them emotionally, in addition to financially.

It is no surprise that the inability to communicate about pay is an indicator of deeper problems between individuals and their managers.

People leave managers, not colleagues, culture or the company

Managers are directly responsible for creating a huge impact on our overall experience of employees. Today’s, mangers are more than just taskmasters and their concern and empathy for employees is what makes employees stick around

Although an employee is attached to a company and its culture, if the manager he is reporting to is like a thorn under his feet, the employees begin to disengage quickly.
Nine months before quitting, employees report a steady decline in management support. While peer relationships are a crucial part of a positive and engaging work experience, when compared to management support, they don’t seem to be a factor that increases an employee’s likelihood of quitting. And neither does organisational fit or strategy— essentially a company’s culture and mission, respectively.

An unsupportive boss is the primary reason for employee engagement declining as people spend a large part of their day at work.

The strength of employee engagement and loyalty scores as attrition indicators is also encouraging, and implies that employee feedback platforms that use a standardised question model are able to successfully act as an early warning system.

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