If you take time to breathe, rally your troops, get team buy-in, and consider your options, you’ll be on your way to making this a positive change.
Picture this: It’s your busy season. Your organization is rolling full steam ahead. But then, you get that dreaded phone call, meeting, or email to let you know that a key member of your team has resigned. Let’s face it, we all have that one employee who you “can’t live without.” Been there? Maybe you’re getting the sweats just thinking about it.
You’re left with several questions, all of which come down to – what’s next? Let’s walk through a few steps that will turn a moment of panic to a moment of opportunity:
- Take a breath. Sound simple? It is. The reality is, a lot of times when someone quits, you were already not getting their top performance. A recent buzzword refers to this as “quiet quitting.” In general, it means the person was most likely disengaged in many ways before actually quitting.
First, you are going to be OK! It’s not personal. We all care about our employees. We check-in on individuals and teams on a regular basis. But, we also know you simply can’t please everyone (as much as we’d like to). What’s done is done, so it’s time to breathe, move on, control what you can, and don’t sweat the rest.
- Rally the troops. You’ve taken a breath, so now it’s time to check-in with the team. Nothing is worse than navigating this kind of situation blind. You need to know how this transition is affecting everyone, and to provide a sense of assurance. To do this, show confidence and stability. You are your organization’s foundation, and nothing is more important than keeping that strong. Be an example on how to handle the news. This is also a great chance to be honest – this is a transitional period and therefore an opportunity to demonstrate more understanding and flexibility.
Here are some questions you can ask as you’re checking in:
- What are you concerns with this person leaving?
- Was this person working on any critical projects that need to be completed and/or reassigned?
- Which clients will be the most impacted by this person’s departure? And, who can become our new client contact?
- What do you think was/is going well and not well with your team? Help me understand some areas of improvement.
- Are there areas and/or initiatives you would like to see our firm support more?
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