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3 Issues That Drive Your Employees Away

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When an employee accepts a job, it doesn’t mean that he or she is going to stay at your business forever.

When it comes to retaining your employees, it’s important to look inward and determine whether or not your business provides enough support for your staff members.

“I think more than anything, employees and human beings in general want to feel valued, we want to feel respected, we want to feel like our hard work is appreciated and it’s paying off,” says Bogi Lateiner, owner of 180 Automotive in Phoenix, Ariz.

When walking into the business each day, it’s important for employees to feel a sense of validation that their opinions matter, their work isn’t overlooked, and they have support in the instance that something were to occur outside of work.

Human resource expert Tim Trujillo of HR Focus in Tehachapi, Calif., and Lateiner discuss common issues that are off-putting for employees, and, unfortunately, reasons why he or she might decide to put in their two weeks notice with the company.


Issue 1: No Review Meetings

“It’s an area within businesses that has been overlooked over the years,” Trujillo says.  “I think [review meetings] are very important because your business is going to be successful depending upon the contribution of your employees; the employees need to have feedback on the good things they’re doing or the areas they need to grow or adjust in the business.”

Conducting a one-on-one review meeting with your employee is essential in running a business. During the meetings, not only do you, the owner, get the opportunity to review your employee’s performance over a set amount of time, but you also get the chance to make suggestions to your employee regarding how to improve their performance, bringing further success to your business.

For Lateiner, owner of 180 Automotive, in Phoenix, Ariz., meeting with staff members is important, even if it’s not done in a traditional, formal setting.

“I can’t emphasize the team meetings enough; it creates culture as far as the individual meetings [go],” Lateiner says. “People crave structure as well, so as leaders, we need to give that to them and having the knowledge that they’re going to have the sit down meeting, it’s really important for their morale and sense of belonging.”

At the start of their employment, inform employees of standard dates or time periods he or she can anticipate a review.

“The ideal [review meeting] is to make it an ongoing process—daily, as necessary,” Trujillo says. “As things occur, it’s best to have the manager discuss it right away with the employee, [whether it’s] positive or negative. If it’s positive, you want to reinforce it, and if it’s negative, the employee needs to know when to adjust and what the issue is.”

All processes do not have to be formal either.

“I, honestly, personally probably have good heart-to-heart meetings with each of my team members one on one on a monthly or more basis,” Lateiner says. “[There’s a] constant feedback process that we are kind of implementing on the regular that decreases the need for reviews.”


Issue 2: Working Employees Overtime

Working overtime can happen often with a business: A customer comes in late, a project falls through last minute, or business is busier than usual—it happens.

“Generally, overtime can be useful to the employer from the standpoint of, if it’s a temporary increase in a need for productivity improvement; the employer gains because they don’t have to hire brand new people, and when you hire brand new people, it’s very time-consuming, difficult, and you don’t know who you’re going to get,” Trujillo says.

However, when employees are expected to work continuously past hours, it can pose damage to the employee’s satisfaction with his or her work and the company.

“If someone needs extra income and they don’t have commitments outside of work, usually [overtime] is not a problem,” Trujillo says. “Let’s say somebody has a family or child-care issues that they have to care of, then that can be an obstacle.

“If you have too much overtime with people, then it becomes stressful; humans need to eat, sleep, and play.”

In addition, using overtime frequently in a business can be difficult to keep track of.

“Recordkeeping is very important to make sure that employees are compensated overtime,” Trujillo says. “It’s really important for the employer to be cautious and keep track of.”

To stay ahead, Trujillo suggests taking a step back to evaluate staff size and determine whether or not it would be beneficial to hire additional help.

“It’s an imperfect thing thing forecasting what your business is going to be,” Trujillo says. “The more intelligently the employer goes about their forecasting will really help the workforce because they should be staffed appropriately; the thing that I’ve always said is, ‘Let’s do overtime if it’s temporary, but if we see big business down the pipeline, let’s talk about adding staff where it’s necessary.’”


Issue 3: Not Offering Benefits

Having employee benefits can help position your company ahead of others in the market because job seekers are often interested in what’s offered in addition to a paycheck. Depending upon the size of your business, if you’re able to finance benefits, then it’s important to keep those in mind in order to keep your employees around.

“The bottom line is [that] it’s a competitive labor market and the better benefits you offer will attract and retain good people,” Trujillo says. “Unfortunately, it’s very dependent on the well-being of the business. The small employer, if capable, should try to offer competitive benefits.”

Benefits can further solidify employee’s satisfaction with the company as well as knowledge that he or she is being taken care of by his or her place of work.

“It’s part of the whole employment package,” Trujillo says. “If the employee perceives that they’re being treated pretty well by the employer, that baseline will really assist the employer in retaining the employee and [the employee will] feel okay about their economic situation.”
To stay in competition with other markets, Trujillo suggests seeking out your state’s reports generated from the Department of Labor to observe what other benefits are offered.

“There are a lot of resources out there—federal and state reports generated like the Department of Labor puts out a lot of information for what employers are offering and what wages are paid,” Trujillo says. “There are a lot of associations that are private and the biggest one is the Society for Human Resources Management; if you’re a member, you can to their website and there’s just a wealth of resources for what’s available, what are trends in benefit offerings, and what benefits cost.”


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