Counter-offer to a resigning employee?
In our previous post (maintaining performance during notice periods) we explored the issues of the psychology of change. These looked at the value of retaining people throughout their notice.
This and psychological state is valid when an employee has an offer and tenders their resignation, and we consider offering a counter-offer to keep this talent.
Counter-offers fall under the same category although many may not see it this way.
When an employee has been active looking for another employer. Been through two or more interviews and accepted an offer – they are psychologically ready to go.
It’s NOT about the money (unless of course they asked for a raise & you previously declined it!). It’s about a breakdown in relations or lost opportunity somewhere. In which case you had your chance, and you failed to engage enough.
Psychologically they have “left the building”. Making an offer that keeps them at this stage in the relationship is a risk. Often all you have done is bought a few more months – they will leave… eventually.
They (the employee) have already made the decision to leave, otherwise they would not have handed their notice in! Let them go and learn from it.
The bigger question to consider is why were they not on your talent plan who else have you missed? Is the talent plan static and not engaging with these people?
Is it just a list that is not acted upon?
Human Capital & Talent Retention
Great words but what do they mean?
In simple terms it means identifying who is important to the success of your organization in the:
- Short term (say to complete a specific contract)
- Long term to maintain a competitive advantage or edge over your competition & business sustainability
What we need to be doing with these valued or talented people, is nurturing them, engaging them. We need to build a relationship that is beyond the “contract”. Your goal is to know when they are unhappy before they start looking elsewhere, and meeting their needs as they arise. Of course this is a delicate balance of value and worth along with a pinch of risk.
Engagement is the tool to combat losses.
Talent management is not about having a plan that identifies key people and roles that is not understood by all managers and leaders involved. Employees also need to be told about their importance, this is half of the battle.
So should we counter-offer to a resigning employee? No, it is too late. Learn from the mistake and do not let other talented people get away through inaction!
Reviewed November 2014 & June 2015