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Running for the exits and starting new businesses

Running for the exits and starting new businesses

We are seeing a surge in entrepreneurship in this country. People are wanting to create their own space, develop their own business model, lead their own team, or simply leave and get a fresh, new start. One of the main reasons I believe this is happening is the toxic nature of leadership in today’s corporate environment.

One of the contributing factors is that corporate managers are being promoted because they know how to massage the ego of their supervisor, stay late to earn political points, kick people down to avoid sharing the spotlight, or various other non-performance related reasons. This has caused the good employees who have skills, a new idea, or merely out of psychological necessity, jump ship to start their own business.

If you are a CEO, here are some in-your-face signs you that should get your attention and cause you to re-assess your company’s leadership and stem the tide of high-value talent turnover:

  • Employees are leaving to accept lower-level positions at smaller, entrepreneurial firms.
  • Talented employees are leaving to start their own businesses.
  • Turnover is confined to certain departments or divisions of the company. This should set-off jerk-alerts in your HR department, and you should know about it.
  • A number of employees are leaving without their next position or business venture lined-up. This is when you know things are really screwed-up in a department.
  • Among all this running for the exits, employees are taking increased PTO, sick or mental health days.
  • Your benefit plan manager is seeing an overall increase in depression and/or anxiety medication costs.
  • Nervous break-downs are a weekly occurance in a particular department or division. (You may think I’m kidding here. I’m not.  Don’t allow your CEO title cause you to be totally disconnected from your people and the real life events happening from day to day in the lives of your employees.)
Kevin Kennemer is founder of The People Group based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Kevin is driven by his passion for company owners and their need to earn a profit, employees' desire for a positive and fulfilling work experience, and the community that benefits when both groups do well.


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