8 Mistakes That Make Good Employees Leave
It’s tough to hold on to good employees, but it shouldn’t be. Most of the mistakes that companies make are easily avoided. When you do make mistakes, your best employees are the first to go, because they have the most options.
If you can’t keep your best employees engaged, you can’t keep your best employees. While this should be common sense, it isn’t common enough.
When you lose good employees, they don’t disengage all at once. Instead, their interest in their jobs slowly dissipates. Michael Kibler, who has spent much of his career studying this phenomenon, refers to it as brownout. Like dying stars, star employees slowly lose their fire for their jobs.
“Brownout is different from burnout because workers afflicted by it are not in obvious crisis,”Kibler said. “They seem to be performing fine: putting in massive hours, grinding out work while contributing to teams, and saying all the things in meetings. However, they are operating in a silent state of continual overwhelm, and the predictable consequence is disengagement.”
In order to prevent brownout and to retain top talent, companies and managers must understand what they’re doing that contributes to this slow fade. The following practices are the worst offenders, and they must be abolished if you’re going to hang on to good employees.
1. They make a lot of stupid rules.
Companies need to have rules — that’s a given — but they don’t have to be shortsighted and lazy attempts at creating order. Whether it’s an overzealous attendance policy or taking employees’ frequent flier miles, even a couple of unnecessary rules can drive people crazy. When good employees feel like big brother is watching, they’ll find someplace else to work.
2. They treat everyone equally.
While this tactic works with school children, the workplace ought to function differently. Treating everyone equally shows your top performers that no matter how high they perform (and, typically, top performers are work horses), they will be treated the same as the bozo who does nothing more than punch the clock.
3. They tolerate poor performance.
It’s said that in jazz bands, the band is only as good as the worst player; no matter how great some members may be, everyone hears the worst player. The same goes for a company. When you permit weak links to exist without consequence, they drag everyone else down, especially your top performers. This often happens when managers lack the emotional intelligence to address performance issues head on.
4. They don’t recognize accomplishments.
It’s easy to underestimate the power of a pat on the back, especially with top performers who are intrinsically motivated. Everyone likes kudos, none more so than those who work hard and give their all. Rewarding individual accomplishments shows that you’re paying attention. Managers need to communicate with their people to find out what makes them feel good (for some, it’s a raise; for others, it’s public recognition) and then to reward them for a job well done. With top performers, this will happen often if you’re doing it.
管 理者容易低估表扬的力量，尤其易低估其对于极度需要激励的优秀员工的作用。人人都爱荣誉，勤勤恳恳、全身心投入工作的员工尤甚。奖励个人的贡献，这说明管 理者予以了重视。管理者需要与员工沟通，找出他们各自喜好的奖励方式（有的人希望涨工资，有的人希望得到公开表扬），用以嘉奖他们良好的工作表现。若奖励 制度实施得当，则奖励对于优秀员工而言是常有之事。
5. They don’t care about people.
More than half the people who leave their jobs do so because of their relationship with their boss. Smart companies make certain that their managers know how to balance being professional with being human (an emotional intelligence test is a good place to start). These are the bosses who celebrate their employees’ successes, empathize with those going through hard times, and challenge them, even when it hurts. Bosses who fail to really care will always have high turnover rates. It’s impossible to work for someone for eight-plus hours a day when they aren’t personally involved and don’t care about anything other than your output.
超 过半数员工离职的原因是与上司关系不佳。聪明的公司会确保其管理者懂得如何做到既专业又不乏人情味（可以先来个情商测试）。这类管理者会为员工取得的成功 感到自豪，理解员工的难处，同时也会让员工接受各种挑战，哪怕这个过程会痛苦。如果老板从不真正关心员工，那么其手下的人员流动就会比较高。没有人愿意将 每天的8个多小时奉献给只知发号施令、只关心业绩的老板。
6. They don’t show people the big picture.
It may seem efficient to simply send employees assignments and move on, but leaving out the big picture is a deal breaker for star performers. Star performers shoulder heavier loads because they genuinely care about their work, so their work must have a purpose. When they don’t know what that is, they feel alienated and aimless. When they aren’t given a purpose, they find one elsewhere.
不 停给员工分配任务，这样做似乎效率很高。然而，对优秀员工而言，不清楚公司的蓝图，可能成为他们离职的主要原因。优秀员工愿意承担更大的工作量，是因为真 心在意自己的工作，因此这些工作必须有价值。他们如果不知道其价值何在，就会产生疏离感，觉得漫无方向。他们在这家公司感受不到自我价值，就会去别处寻找 价值。
7. They don’t let people pursue their passions.
Google mandates that employees spend at least 20% of their time doing “what they believe will benefit Google most.” While these passion projects make major contributions to marquis Google products, such as Gmail and AdSense, their biggest impact is in creating highly engaged Googlers. Talented employees are passionate. Providing opportunities for them to pursue their passions improves their productivity and job satisfaction, but many managers want people to work within a little box. These managers fear that productivity will decline if they let people expand their focus and pursue their passions. This fear is unfounded. Studies have shown that people who are able to pursue their passions at work experience flow, a euphoric state of mind that is five times more productive than the norm.
谷 歌公司规定员工投入至少20%的时间去做“自认为最有益于谷歌的事”。这些兴趣爱好的项目催生了优秀的谷歌产品，如谷歌邮箱和广告联盟，但其最大的作用是 培养了高度专注的谷歌员工。才能出众的员工往往满怀热忱。让这些员工有机会追求自己的爱好，可以提高他们的工作效率和对工作的满意度，但很多管理者却把员 工的工作范围限制在一个小空间里。这类管理者担忧，如果让员工扩大注意力范围，追求自己的兴趣爱好，他们的效率就会降低。这种担忧纯属多余。研究表明，如 果员工能够在工作中追求自己的爱好，其大脑会一直处于兴奋状态，而此时的效率是正常效率的五倍。
8. They don’t make things fun.
If people aren’t having fun at work, then you’re doing it wrong. People don’t give their all if they aren’t having fun, and fun is a major protector against brownout. The best companies to work for know the importance of letting employees loosen up a little. Google, for example, does just about everything it can to make work fun—free meals, bowling allies, and fitness classes, to name a few. The idea is simple: if work is fun, you’ll not only perform better, but you’ll stick around for longer hours and an even longer career.
如 果员工工作得很无聊，这就是管理者的问题。员工不愉快，就无法全身心投入到工作当中。乐趣是抵抗“电力减弱”的主要力量。好公司都会清楚一点：让员工适当 放松很重要。例如，谷歌公司竭尽所能让工作变得有趣，如免费用餐、保龄球场和健身课程等等。谷歌这样做的意图很简单：如果工作很有趣，员工不仅会表现得更 好，而且会愿意工作更长时间，甚至会以此作为长久的事业。
Bringing It All Together: Managers tend to blame their turnover problems on everything under the sun while ignoring the crux of the matter: people don’t leave jobs; they leave managers.