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Most leaders handle employee resignations wrong

You might ask, how?

Well, they end up:

– Taking it personally.
– Reacting emotionally [or angrily 😬].
– Letting it create a negative work environment.

Here are some tips on how to cope with resignations – the right way.

#1 What’s the situation?

How your employee resigns will give you the best steer on how you handle their notice period.

  • Their general attitude
  • Their reasons for leaving
  • Their approach to the handover

This will tell you whether they can break the news to the team in person or you should via a meeting.

#2 What happened?

Get honest feedback.

Ask them:

  • Why they decided to leave
  • Any suggestions they have for improvement
  • What they liked/disliked about working for you

Listen carefully and respectfully. It can help you become a better leader and prevent future turnover.

#3 What’s the plan of attack?

Make a plan for the transition of their work and responsibilities.

Have them list their tasks, projects, and deadlines, assigning them to other team members or yourself.

Make sure they document every process, procedure, and knowledge in a clear and accessible way so the team can pick up where they left off.

#4 Rethink the role

Take some time to rethink the role and your team’s structure.

  1. Is the role still relevant and aligned with your goals?
  2. What skills & qualities should your ideal candidate have? 
  3. Do you need to make changes or updates to the job description?

This is your chance to rethink and refine your hiring strategy.

#5 Fill the gap

You might need to manage a gap until you hire a replacement.

Consider if your team can handle the extra workload or whether you need to hire some temporary resource.

If you do need to hire someone temporarily, ensure they have the right qualifications, experience, and attitude for the role.

#6 So long, farewell 👋

Organise a farewell for the employee so you and the team can say goodbye – properly.

It doesn’t have to be much – morning tea, lunch… but do your best to mark the occasion.

A proper farewell sends the right message to the person leaving and your remaining staff.

So, make sure you handle resignations the right way – because it’s important!

About the author

Consult Recruitment

Consult Recruitment is a leading recruitment agency based in Auckland, pairing top talent with the best businesses. We pride ourselves on delivering outstanding experiences so you can focus on what's important.

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