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HR Matters // A Newsletter On: Creating exceptional workplaces and extraordinary results
HR MATTERS Vol 9, Issue 8 - August 2012

I recently was invited to appear on CNN International's prime time business show 'Quest Means Business' with Richard Quest, where I spoke about talent maximization and the need to fully engage all employees in the organization. We also discussed the challenge of retaining top talent in today's business environment. Employee retention for the right reasons is a common problem across the Globe.

This month's article on the Real Cost of Zero Percent Employee Turnover is meant to provide you with a perspective that few think about. What happens when organizations don't have any employee turnover? Most would argue that this is a good thing. In some cases it might be, but I believe it's a situation that should be examined more closely. What do you think?

The Real Cost of Zero Percent Turnover

By Roberta Chinsky Matuson

I recently met with a CEO who was proud of the fact that his organization had little employee turnover. He then proceeded to tell me how happy he was about the impending retirement of one of his executives, who had pretty much checked out several years ago.

For some, having little employee turnover may seem like a good thing. However, when we drill down deeper we usually find there is more to the story than meets the eye. In the above scenario, the CEO knew this employee was operating far below acceptable performance levels. Yet, he chose do nothing but wait it out. One can only wonder how many of his managers are doing the same with their employees. Hence, the artificially low employee turnover numbers. Imagine the impact this must be having on productivity throughout the organization.

I hope you will recall this story of the CEO the next time you encounter levels of employee turnover that are well below the norm. At least consider the possibility that a closer look at the organization may be required.

Here are three reasons why extremely low employee turnover may indeed be hurting your company.

1. Dead weight is weighing you down. Nothing holds a successful company back more than dead weight. Imagine for a moment that your team is asked to compete in a relay race with one member who can barely walk a mile, never mind run the distance required to even be considered a contender. Do you think your team stands a chance of winning the race? All it takes is one or two people to hold everyone else back.

Many companies do a horrific job of taking poor performers out of the business. The end result is the loss of high performers who tire of picking up the slack.

2. Nowhere to go but out. What if someone were to tell you that you had gone as far as you were going to go because the people above you were never going to leave? Would you stick around, knowing you had peaked at the ripe old age of thirty? That's what happens in organizations where no one ever leaves. The problem that often occurs in scenarios like this one is that the people you want to leave wind up staying, and the ones you want to stay leave.

Successful employees want to know that their efforts will be rewarded. Think about this the next time you allow employees to permanently take up space in your building long after they've outstayed their welcome. Then make room for people to advance in your organization.

3. Homogenization Imagine if you looked around one day and every employee in your firm approached situations the exact same way, because there were no new people to challenge the old way of thinking. Some of you might find this idea appealing, as some level of consistency can be good. But after a while, little would occur in terms of innovation and new products and services. Your firm would look exactly like every other company. That is, before these companies went out of business.

Take a closer look at the people who are in your company today. They may have been the right people to help you get where you are, but are they the right people to get you to the next level? Is it in their best interest to continue to do the same job in and out for the next twenty years? Most probably not.

Employee turnover is a natural part of the employment lifecycle. Companies who understand this and manage employee turnover live a longer and healthier life than those who don't.

© 2012 Matuson Consulting. All rights reserved.

Coming Soon: The Magnetic Workplace: How to Attract Top Talent that will Stick Around (Nicholas Brealey, 2013)

In case you missed the exciting news... I just signed my second book deal with Nicholas Brealey Publishing and will be writing The Magnetic Workplace: How to Attract Top Talent that Will Stick Around. The publication date is 2013. Here's a sneak peek of what's to come:

There has never been a better time to hire top talent, but employers are taking too long. Many are operating under the assumption that nothing has changed in the employment landscape. They are about to be trampled, as top talent has already started stampeding out the door. Like wildebeest crossing the plains, as soon as one begins the migration the rest will follow.
In a recent Manpower survey, a whopping 84% of workers said they were planning on searching for a new job. That's good news for companies seeking top talent and not such good news for those that are left with a mediocre workforce.

The Magnetic Workplace: How to Attract Top Talent That Will Stick Around will be the guide for employers looking to boost their gravitational pull. The book will present straightforward, easy-to-apply techniques to help leaders navigate through the challenges of attracting and keeping the talent needed to foster innovation and fuel growth that's out of this world.

Here's where I can use some help. I'm looking to interview leaders from organizations that have achieved this state of magnetism, without the deep pockets associated with such brand names as Google and Facebook. If you fit this bill or you know of someone who does, please send me a note at Roberta@yourhrexperts.com. You will receive a complimentary signed copy of The Magnetic Workplace if your company is featured in the book or if you are the referral source.

Of course you don't have to wait for the book to come out to benefit from my expertise. I help clients attract better quality candidates, reduce the cost of employee acquisition and make it easier for clients to attract passive job seekers. I also help organizations dramatically improve employee engagement and employee retention. If I can be of help to you, please don't hesitate to call me at 413-582-1840 or e-mail me at Roberta@yourhrexperts.com.

Warm regards,

Roberta on FastCompany Roberta on Monster Roberta's Blog
About Roberta Matuson

For more than 25 years, Roberta Matuson, president of Matuson Consulting, has helped leaders in Fortune 500 companies and small to medium-size businesses create exceptional workplaces leading to extraordinary results. As a seasoned consultant, Roberta is considered a leading authority on leadership and the skills and strategies required to earn employee commitment and client loyalty.

She is the author of the highly acclaimed book, Suddenly in Charge: Managing Up, Managing Down, Succeeding All Around and is a highly sought after speaker, consultant and executive coach.

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Selecting for Success

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Selecting for Success

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Email: Roberta@YourHRExperts.com
Tel: 413.582.1840 | Tel: 617.566.8978
Fax: 413.582.7111

© 2012 Matuson Consulting. All Rights Reserved.