Why is it that the turnaround for employees so high here in Newfoundland? Most importantly, why is it even higher in the metropolitan areas? I have a theory and the answer is simple: management.
I am from Bay Roberts, where I had my first job. It was at a popular restaurant that is busy every night of the week. I know what you are wondering, why is a restaurant in a small town, with a small population, so busy?
Well, it is because the managers and business owner made sure to engage their employees every single day. We would hear how good we were doing, and if we weren’t, we would get helpful criticism. We had regular employee meetings which started off with a thank you from the owner in regards to how well we were doing. Everyone who worked there, whether they were 15 or 50, was treated with the utmost respect. This created something magical. We loved our jobs!
I know that most people in St. John’s would find that hard to believe but it’s true. I loved going to work, I would show up early, always stay late for a drink with my co-workers and my boss, and I would go to work and give 110 per cent every day. When I was there, I tried so hard to be good to my boss, my co-workers and most importantly the customers, which in turn ensured that they would be returning. It was like a second family.
You can imagine my surprise when I moved to St. John’s for school and found out that it wasn't the same here in town. Needless to say, I was one disgruntled employee.
In the last seven years I have fought to find that perfect job again. Instead, in each place I work, all I find are upset employees, micro-managers and senseless business owners.
My theory is that management has no issue in treating their employees like a number, because if they quit, there is someone right behind them ready and willing to take their place. In most small towns, good employees are scarce.
Most people chose to pack up their things and move to town to make a good living, so when a good employee comes along, most employers do whatever they can to keep them from moving on.
I have seen everything possible when it comes to management in St. John’s. I have seen managers call employees and customers names, I’ve seen lazy managers, micro-managers, I have even seen and experienced some forms of harassment.
These high turnovers in businesses create a great deal of issues. The first issue is the cost of training in an employee.
Monster.ca recently put out an article by Mark Swartz, a Canadian Workplace Specialist, stating that “four per cent of employees leave a new job after a ‘disastrous’ first day.”
That number is way too high. What could cause an employee to leave after the first day? It takes a lot of work, time and money to train in employees, businesses should be more inclined to try and keep their employees. According to Swartz, “it can cost up to 150 per cent of a departing employee’s salary to replace them.”
Each employee must be interviewed, fill out the necessary paperwork, and go through orientation and many hours of training. All of that time costs a lot of valuable money. I think that if each business owner considers the cost of hiring and training an employee, they would be more inclined to keep them
Secondly, it is a proven fact that when a employee, even a valuable hard working employee, is treated with any level of disrespect their morale decreases drastically.
The result is simple; you will see a decrease in work ethic, an increase in sick days and, of course, a higher turn over rate of employees.
Statistics Canada reported that in 2011, the average yearly days lost per worker was 8.5. That, to me, is a staggering amount, considering that in my seven years at my first job, I never called in sick a single day.
Now, if you are a business that offers paid sick days this could hurt you. Let’s say 15 employees, each making $12 an hour, with eight hour work days with 8.5 sick days a year. You just lost $12,240! And that is just in one year. This does not include the number of employees that have to take stress leave due to their work environment.
In short, I believe that each business should invest in proper management training. If you train your managers how to properly handle everyday work related issues in sure that you will see a number of changes in your business such as increased work ethic, increased team moral and most importantly an increase of money in your pocket.
Take some advice from me, change now, if not you will always have a high turnover and you will continue to lose money as a result.
A.C. Hiscock writes from St. John’s.