We all know that engaged workers are more productive and loyal. Conversely, disengaged workers are less productive and are among the first to “turnover.” And we all know that turnover can be costly considering it involves hiring, onboarding, training, ramp time to peak productivity, the loss of engagement from others due to high turnover, higher business error rates, and general culture impacts.
But how much does turnover “really” cost?
A 2017 Deloitte study stated the cost of losing an employee can range between 1.5–2.0x the employee’s annual salary. But the costs can be even higher based upon skill level. For example, a paper from the Center for American Progress determined that the average economic cost to a company of turning over a highly skilled job is 213% of the cost of one year’s compensation for that role.
Then there are some of the less tangible considerations, as illustrated by the following example: A young, seemingly fast-rising junior executive had been working at a large bank for just over six years. When he was asked about his job and how he felt about it he said, “The job’s OK.”
His lack of enthusiasm was evident, and when pressed to say more he added, “Well, I’m not really learning much anymore.”
When asked if he was fully-engaged he said probably not but went on to say that he still did a great job. “I still give 100% and consider myself to be a great employee,” he said. Then, after a short pause, he added,” But I don’t give them 110% and there’s a big difference between 100% and 110% — at least for me.”
When asked if he was out looking he responded, “No…, but I’m listening.”
When asked whether he told his boss how he was feeling he said, “Yeah, but….”
How many people in how many places feel like he does? He is bright, educated, skilled, well-liked, and might be an ideal candidate for a senior leadership position…if he stays.
But is he being made to feel like an important part of the team? Does anyone realize that he could be giving more? Is he being engaged?
As stated above, among the many documented advantages of an engaged worker is loyalty. But so too is the discretionary effort that they put forth; going the extra mile; the above-and-beyond attitude… giving 110%! How many innovative ideas might that extra 10% yield? How much more productivity? What impact might it have on customers or coworkers?
And if he doesn’t stay, the simple replacement costs are not the real issue. He is a potential super-star! He is a known-entity… trustworthy, dependable, low-risk.
What are the real (or hidden!) costs associated with disengagement; the costs of not getting 110%… the costs of not only lost workers, but also of
lost opportunities? As we’ve discovered over the years, the biggest waste in most businesses is the lost opportunities…