So things are ticking along nicely in your business… Your staff are engaged, productive, and they’re smashing their goals. Sales are on the rise, and you’re feeling pretty pleased with the fact that you’ve managed to grow and nurture such an awesome team of employees.
But suddenly, there’s a spanner in the works…..
Completely out of the blue, a key member of staff tells you that they’re moving on to pastures new. In a small business, this can be a serious blow, and it can have a real impact on your bottom line if it’s not managed effectively.
So let’s take a look at what you need to do, in practical terms…
Establish exactly when they’ll leave
You might already have a policy in place surrounding the necessary notice period. Of course though, things don’t always go according to plan, so don’t make any assumptions. Make sure that you know the precise date that your employee will leave. This way, you can sort out any outstanding admin arrangements, including payroll, and you can also start to work out your next steps so there’s minimum impact on your business.
Carry out an exit interview
An exit interview will allow you to get some valuable feedback about why your member of staff decided to leave. You can’t retain everyone you recruit, but it makes sense to keep an eye on the reasons why people move on to different things.
Do remember that because you’re the boss, you’re not always going to get the full and complete truth. It might be worth outsourcing this part of the process, so you can be sure that you’re getting more reliable and meaningful information to work with.
Craft your continuity plan
Right now, it’s no help whatsoever for us to mention that you should have already planned for these kinds of circumstances. You already know this, and you’re probably kicking yourself. Still though, there’s work to be done. You need to establish how you’ll make sure that productivity remains high, and that your business doesn’t suffer.
Part of this is likely to involve looking for a new member of staff. For now, consider how you can bridge any gaps by utilising your existing workforce, without making unreasonable demands. It may not be ideal, but there’s often a silver lining. You could be giving an ambitious employee an opportunity to step up and broaden their experience.
Don’t forget to thank your employee for their contribution
We know that you don’t need us to tell you that this is a good idea, but when you’re stressed out about the future, it’s easy to overlook the most obvious things. Your member of staff could go on to refer business your way, or they may even become a customer or a client in the future.
And of course, you definitely don’t want to face the fallout that could come with your employee ending their time with you on a sour note. A little bit of consideration can go a long way.
If you’re currently dealing with the potential nightmare of having a member of staff hand in their notice, or you’re worried that you might be in the not too distant future, then get in touch. We can have a chat about your options, and how you can navigate your way through the potential pitfalls.