How to Recognize When an Employee is About to Quit

No more motivation, frequently calling in sick, unusually well-dressed: an employer can detect the signs of an employee who is about to resign if only they pay attention. It is better to recognize these signs before an employee quits.


Dressing up

If a person who usually dresses casually suddenly wears button-down shirts and a blazer several times a week, this is your first clue that an employee may be searching for another job.

Absent during working hours

Arriving later in the office or taking an afternoon off may be sign of the fact that the employee is conducting interviews with potential employers. In most cases, these interviews will take place during office hours, so the employee will have no choice but to be absent from the workplace.

Taking a lot of holidays

An employee may want to exhaust their vacation days before leaving their job. Sudden and frequent demands should raise a red flag.

Leaving the office for personal calls

Someone who begins to cover up their personal calls at the office or who frequently moves away for more privacy could potentially be receiving calls from prospect employers.

Less motivation and commitment

Approximately 70% of employees report little commitment to work, according to a Gallup survey conducted in 2012. However, an employee who refuses to engage in long-term projects sends a clear warning to his or her employer, a study by the Utah State University finds.

Reduced productivity

This demotivation will certainly lead to a decline in productivity that will last, according to the same American study, carried out in 2014. An employee may experience a difficult time that has an impact on their work, but if the situation persists, they begin to question their motivation to remain within the company.

Verbalizing their misfortune

A truly unhappy person will tend to verbalize their dissatisfaction, at least to their colleagues. These comments can however be subtle and fail to reach the boss' ears.

Delegating responsibilities

If the employee has found a more challenging position elsewhere, they may start preparing for their departure by delegating responsibility for various projects to colleagues. At this point, the employer should schedule a meeting with the employee.

Avoiding social interaction with colleagues and bosses

A sociable person who suddenly avoids happy hour drinks, office parties and even chit chats around the coffee machine: all signs that should sound the alarm, according to the Utah State University study.

Vague when talking about their future in the company

If several of these signs are present, it is better for the employer to have a frank conversation with his or her employee about their future within the company. If the employee admits to looking elsewhere, it may be worthwhile to offer them a new position and a better salary when it is someone that we wish to keep. However, the offer must also reflect a change on the employee’s part.  If they remain blas√© and uninterested, it is better to let a good employee leave than to keep them against their will.

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