According to, hiring a new employee after losing one can cost your company anywhere from $50,000-$150,000. In other words, your employees (if they’re doing a good job) are worth keeping!

Are you having issues with employee turnover? A lot of companies do, and there are so many reasons employees decide to leave, that employers often overlook. Of course, there are times where employees have to leave because of money, insurance, etc. and there’s really not much you can do about it. In fact, over 70% of people say that a job they love is more important to them than a job that pays well.

The question is: Why are your employees leaving? And, how can you get them to stay?

Poor Communication

If your employees are concerned about the future of the company or their position, they will often let their fear drive them to move on. Poor communication with your employees is never a good idea. Whether you are having an issue with the employee themself, or the company as a whole, be sure to express those frustrations. Allow an open line of communication both ways, so if your employee feels they have something to talk about, they will be comfortable coming to you. People want to feel valued and informed. You don’t have to give every detail of the company’s finances or struggles to your employees, but communicating so they’re not in the dark is a great place to start with retaining them.

Lack of Recognition

Everybody wants to be recognized for their hard work and effort! Whether it’s at work, in your personal life, or elsewhere, you want to be recognized. A pat on the back every once in a while is appreciated by everyone. Show your employees that you value their work and you’re glad to have them working for you. There are some many ways to show recognition to your employees that are cheap, but will be well-received:

  • Host an employee breakfast 2x/year before work.
  • Offer an extra hour for lunch on their birthday.
  • Allow your employees to take vacation time every year (it doesn’t need to be an excessive amount).
  • Have holiday parties every year for employees & their families.
  • Congratulate your employees on big sales or a job well-done.


Nobody likes to be micromanaged. You want to be sure your employees are getting the job done right, but it’s important to do so without making them feel inferior. Remember, you are working with capable adults and they should be treated as such. If you find yourself micromanaging bathroom breaks, phone calls, etc. you might want to take a look at whether or not you would be willing to lose that employee. If you’re having an issue with an employee, let them know and communicate with them like an adult. Micromanaging only wastes your time and upsets your employees. A good way of being sure everyone is on task and on the same page would be to have monthly trainings/meetings. Let your employees know of your expectations and any updates on the company that they need to know. This is a great way to be sure things are running smoothly, without having to mircomanage.

No Personal Connections

Having a “bad boss” or a boss you have no relationship with is the number one reason why employees choose to leave their job. Just because someone quits, doesn’t mean you are actually a “bad boss.” Instead, it means that you may be struggling to connect and build relationships with your employees. It’s important for your employees to recognize that you are the boss and your business is professional, so you don’t need to be their best friend. However, you should have some personal connections with them, and care about their lives outside of work. Some examples of this would be:

Know about their spouse and children: Know the names of their family members, and a basic overview of their home life.

Care about their issues: If an employee calls in with a ‘family emergency,’ show that you care. You can ask how you can help and if everything is ok, without being too nosy.

Have running jokes: When you have a sense of humor at work, you are automatically much more likeable and easy to relate to. Have jokes with your employees and don’t be afraid to laugh with them.

For more insights on marketing strategy that actually works for small business, subscribe to the FreshLime Newsletter here. Connect with Jay Bean, Founder of FreshLime and Small Business Marketing Expert on LinkedIn and Twitter. And last of all, if any of these tips have helped you or if you have anything to add please comment below. We’d love to hear from you!


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