"We spend all our time on people. The day we screw up the people thing, this company is over."
- Jack Welch, former chairman, General Electric
What is the true cost of attrition? We would warn you it is certainly much more than you think. Most aspiring managers typically have no understanding of the significant impact of churn in the organization. Managers are not trained to deal with attrition beyond the scope of their direct reports and yet this is such a critical aspect that impacts the operational core and even the competitive advantage of a company.
Attrition is the soft underbelly of talent management, as managers are quick to hire, well-practiced to interview and devote lots of executive time to new searches but are ineffective at retention. If managers were truly aligned to a corporate mission to create conditions to stem attrition, those companies would be very successful indeed.
The symptoms of attrition?
Companies that claim to be high pressure, dealing with constant change and long hiring cycles.
In every executive meeting, several new managers who are floundering with how to get decisions made.
Executives appear to have knowledge of a portion of the process or wrong assumptions about an area of knowledge.
Decision making tends to be painstakingly slow at several levels.
When projects execute, everyone seems to be content with only executing their part.
Team leads protecting their back, keeping their inbox full to avoid being saddled with additional tasks being dispersed to them.
What if you could quantify the effect of attrition on your organization to get the attention of your highest leaders? What if you could say to colleagues that “churn” is burning a $500,000 hole in your organization each year?
As we innovate in the workplace, collaborate on producing valuable services for the company and pour our best efforts into our organization, there is a financial bleed in progress, unseen and dragging on the company’s profitability. A $500k bleed is worth 10 great workers you could have had. To a sales executive, that is half a million of profit undone.
You can turn this problem into an investment, with a simple tool. If you would like to calculate the financial impact of attrition in your company, you can use a free calculator that will give you an estimate of the problem.
If you expose the true cost of attrition you essentially define an initiative with a return on investment that has a real impact on the bottom line.