Where’s the Failure Analysis?

This employee retention speaker and employee retention trainer is appalled by the lack of “failure analysis” that goes into employee turnover.  That’s the way it has to be viewed.  Something went wrong in your process that resulted in an employee leaving your organization.  Whether it was a bad hire, a lousy job of assimilation, improper training etc. etc. etc.  We tend to make excuses rather than say “we failed.”  It drives this employee retention author crazy when my manufacturing clients who are great at failure analysis for everything else, ignore this same process when it comes to employee retention. Yet, my manufacturing clients are far better than other industries in that they believe in failure analysis.  Many other industries go on oblivious to the fact that employee turnover is killing them.

Every time an employee leaves the organization, it has to be looked at in the same way as making a defective part.  The question has to be asked, “What went wrong?”  We are not just talking about scratching the surface. We are talking about digging deep to get to the root cause of the problem.  Absenteeism is the classic example.  Why was the person late?  Answer: His car broke down.  Why?  Answer:  It’s old and needs repair and he doesn’t have the money to fix it because he is living pay check to pay check.  Then my question is, how can he get to work other than driving his car.  Can he carpool?  Can he take public transportation?  You simply can’t accept that that absenteeism is the answer.  You must dig below the surface to come up with the root cause of the problem.

Once the root cause is determined, you can focus on dealing with that issue.  Only when you start to face your employee turnover in the same ways will you make a dent in your employee turnover.  In manufacturing environments, they are always doing failure analysis of this type.  That same discipline needs to be applied to the issue of employee turnover and the drivers that cause it.  Then, and only then, will you see a significant decline in your turnover.

If you have a problem, you have to act on it.  Blaming it on some outside factors will not get you where you need to be in your retention process.  It takes hard work and a disciplined approach to get it done.  Acceptance of  a problem on its face will only perpetuate the real problem.

Jeff Kortes

jeff@humanassetmgt.com

Jeff Kortes is an employee retention expert who speaks and conducts workshops regularly in Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota and Indiana. He draws on his experiences as a human resources professional, father, coach, martial artist and U.S. Army veteran to provide thought-provoking programs that yield results.