Take these 7 Steps When You Lose Your Highest Producing Employee

Let’s face it; no forward-thinking company wants to lose their A player. A recent study by Kelley School of Business, Indiana University revealed that top talents deliver 400% more productivity than average performing employees. Well, if that isn’t a good reason enough to make you work earnestly towards retaining your high producing employees, remember replacing star performers is quite costly, and they might ship their skills and insights to your competition.

The sad truth is, 25 percent of high producing employees are likely to leave in the next 6 months, as opposed to 20 percent overall. If the worse has happened to you, the chances are that you’re freaking out. Wondering what to do next?

In this blog post, we are going to walk you through a 7-step disaster plan for when you lose a high performer.

1. Stay Collected

If you’ve just lost the crème de la crème of your workforce, it’s crucial that you don’t push the panic button – at least, not yet. Unless low wage was the only reason for quitting, it isn’t wise to make a hasty counteroffer; you’ll only be postponing the inevitable. Stay calm and map out the way forward with a sober mind.

2. Carry Out an Exit Interview

Wouldn’t be nice if you knew what went so wrong that the best performer left? Is it wrong culture fit, low salary, lack of morale, or uninspiring bosses? Whatever it is, conduct an exit interview so you can rest assured that the issue will be remedied.

3. Take Care of Issues at the Workplace

If you’ve been losing high performer one after the other, it’s paramount to address the issue before it gets out of hand. The management team should handle the issue from a sales perspective.

4. Hire a Temp to Fill the Gap

Leaving a huge gap left by the star talent unfilled is never a good sign for the remaining employees. That’s why you need to hire a temporary help immediately to take the pressure off of other team members and boost morale.

5. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

Keeping quiet is a sure-fire recipe for disaster. Silence shows other high performers that you don’t care about their input. You might want to hold a series of department or town hall meetings to communicate the issue, and reassure the team that everything is okay.

6. Always Groom Possible Hires

It’s in the best interest of the company to take advantage of its talent pipeline. Oftentimes that means cultivating a list of possible hires year-round. If you have don’t have a well-established HR department, it may be a great idea to partner with an extensively connected staffing agency or talent head-hunters.

7. Create a Clear-Cut Succession Plan

Every forward-thinking company should have a succession plan in place for every critical position. Often called the ‘life boat drill’, the succession plan will help the successor fill the shoes of the leaving star performer without much hassle. This way, you will prepare for worst case scenario and have key replacement handy for every high producing employee at your fingertips.

If you want to retain your key performers, offer competitive salaries and provide a positive work environment. Understand what matters most to your employees, recognize excellent work, and focus on their career development.