By: Tess Worrell
When employees start griping, many bosses choose to hide until the storm passes. They hope, pray, and count on the employees either miraculously working it out–or the problem fading away. Too often neither works. Instead, one or more employees leave.
Usually not the employee causing the problem.
While bosses bemoan the situation, they might not realize the huge cost to their bottom line–or the fact that they have options for making life better.
Heather Boushey and Sarah Jane Glynn reviewed 11 studies on the cost to employers when employees leave, either voluntarily or involuntarily, and compiled their findings in an article entitled: “There Are Significant Costs to Replacing Employees.” (cite below). They found that the direct costs of replacing most employees was about 20% of the employee’s salary–regardless of education or salary. (The exceptions were employees with highly specified skill sets such as physicians or business executives. The cost for replacing such an employee could range as high as 216% of salary.) Direct costs included:
- Separation costs such as exit interviews, severance pay, and higher unemployment taxes
- The cost to temporarily cover an employee’s duties such as overtime for other staff or temporary staffing
- Replacement costs such as advertising, search and agency fees, screening applicants, including physicals or drug testing, interviewing and selecting candidates, background verification, employment testing, hiring bonuses, and applicant travel and relocation costs
- Training costs such as orientation, classroom training, certifications, on-the-job training, uniforms, and informational literature.
Indirect costs–such as reduction in morale, lost productivity, and loss of institutional knowledge–add to the 20%.
Conclusion–when employees fight, employers pay. What can employers do–to keep good employees and protect their bottom line? Hire a conflict coach.
- interview employees to gain insight on the variety of perspectives at play
- work one-on-one with employees–equipping them with strategies to present their concerns or desires in a way that fits the business culture and blends with other employees’ perspectives
- create agreements for employees to follow in future conflicts.
Should conflicts require more than one-one coaching, at The Resolution Center our coaches are also equipped to mediate those deep-seated conflicts which inhibit team spirit and progress on business goals.
- Conflicts settled
- Employees emerge with the skills to resolve future conflicts
- Boundaries clearly defined for benefit of all
- Cooperation develops between employees–creating a foundation for business success
- Bottom line improves
For employers facing ongoing issues between employees (or between an employee and the boss), Conflict Coaching can resolve the issues and create a more productive workplace.