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Employee Retention – Stay Interviews

Written by Ed Callahan on March 10, 2014

Implementers EOS

Employee Retention - Stay InterviewsA colleague of mine, Rich Lukesh, is an HR Professional who runs a business called Your Part Time HR Manager ( which is an On-Site and On-Call HR Services business. He writes an excellent blog with thoughtful suggestions for business owners and the HR Professionals who support them. One of his recent blog posts is called Stay Interviews: A Great Tool For Employee Retention – you can find it here.

I mention the post because it has some great content for managers to use during quarterly employee conversations. Once a company has fully rolled out EOS, every manager is asked to conduct quarterly conversations with each of their direct reports using the EOS tool called the People Analyzer. The manager uses the People Analyzer to rate the employee on how well s/he is living the company Core Values and whether the manager thinks the employee Gets, Wants and has the Capacity to do their job. The conversation is about 30 minutes in duration and ideally is done in a neutral site, like a Starbucks. Here is an earlier post with more detail on the Core Values. I explain GWC more fully here.

After the initial one or two quarterly conversations, which are more about teaching the use of the People Analyzer and identifying the gaps in the perception of the employee and the manager, EOS suggests that the manager focuses on reinforcing one or another value or closing the deficiencies in GWC, where possible. I have often been asked by managers – “What do I do with star employees, where there are no gaps? They are the exemplars for our values and they are great at their jobs. What are those quarterly conversations about?”

This is where Rich Lukesh’s idea of a stay interview comes in. Focus on the employee’s issues, aspirations and goals. You really should read the whole post, but here are three questions Rich suggests you ask the employee:

  • § What are your proudest accomplishments and biggest disappointments?
  • § What activities energize you and drain you?
  • § Do you feel your talents are being used well?

You can see where the answers to these questions would lead to understanding what you need to do to retain these key employees, can’t you? If you are successfully doing quarterly conversations with key employees already, would you share some of the great questions you use in those conversations with us here? If you are not doing quarterly conversations with key employees, be prepared to lose some of them in 2014.

More Blog Posts: ← A Simple Question That Will Keep Your Organization Healthy and Productive | Business Core Focus: “Imagine a Hedgehog in a Wrestling Outfit.”