Back to Blogs
Share this Article

The New Year Suprise Most Managers Don't Expect Plus what to do when it happens

  • Publish Date: Posted over 4 years ago
  • Author:by Becky Carruthers

​Who doesn’t love summer holiday season: long days at the beach and warm nights by the BBQ, offices closed and quality time with family and friends.

​But while you do your best not to think about work, surveys suggest that your employees may have spent their holidays reviewing their personal career goals and aspirations, and figuring out how that aligns with their current position.

This means that for some of your employees, their new year resolutions may include finding a new job.

In Australia, more than half of hiring managers surveyed have had an employee resign within one month following a vacation. With the festive summer holidays just passed, do you know what to do if that happens?

Handling resignations is never easy, but dealing with it professionally and compassionately can ease the strain on your employee departing, your employees remaining, and yourself.

Above all else, remember to remain professional throughout the process and refrain from taking it too personally. Your conduct now is just as important as when you first interviewed them, as this the final impression you’ll leave them with – make it a positive one.

  • First, consider their reasons for leaving:

Some people may prefer to keep their reason for leaving private. If appropriate, question whether it’s anything fixable from your end and whether they’d be willing to discuss it.

Reasons might range from a lack of growth opportunities to poor relationships with managers and colleagues, to something entirely non-work-related such as a partner being transferred to another city, or an elderly parent needing care.

In some cases, an open discussion can find alternatives to the person leaving – perhaps more flexibility, or a leave of absence – but in others you’ll find that your employee’s mind is already made up by a better offer or higher pay check, and the only thing you can do is accept it and wish them well.

  • Second, consider whether you really want to make a counter offer:

What will it take for them to stay? This is the first question in many manager’s minds, but it’s the wrong one. If your employee comes to you with a resignation letter, it’s already too late.

80% of candidates who accept a counter offer from their current employer will leave within 6 months. Is it really worth your time and effort, just to keep them for another few months?

  • Third, begin preparations for their replacement:

Assuming your relationship with the departing employee has remained positive, they should be involved in the process of preparing for the next person to take their role. If you’ll be looking externally to fill the vacancy, this can involve writing a job description, drawing up handover notes, and tidying up loose ends from their current tasks.

Meanwhile, you can look at what additional skills or assets would be desirable to grow the role and your business into the future. Although it’s disappointing to see a valued staff member leave, this could open up an opportunity to bring a fresh voice, unique insights, or different set of skills to the role, and new growth to your company.

  • Fourth, choose a professional to help find the perfect new employee:

Recruitment professionals make it their business to get to know your business, and seek out the perfect skills-fit and culture-add to support your goals. One of the best things about using recruiters is that they find the candidates who aren’t even actively looking, giving you the edge on your competitors who stick to the simple post-a-job-and-get-replies route.

Our Become team have a pool of passive and active candidates from a range of disciplines. Are you needing to replace your outgoing UX specialist? We might have a couple already who’d be perfect, and are ready to step into a new challenge.

Just as your own employee returned from break having decided on a new direction, we find the others who’re ready to step out and start somewhere new too.

How would you like to devote your focus to growing your business in the new year, while experienced professionals do the hard work to find your new star employee? Sound good?

Get in touch with our team today in Auckland, Melbourne, or Sydney for a chat.