Let’s put forth a scenario: Lauren A. has announced her resignation to her boss — she’s put in three weeks’ notice. The boss doesn’t want to upset the team with this news, but feels unsure of how to let them know, especially with a rather significant project coming up that Lauren would’ve helped with. So he sits on it for a week. But the office grapevine picks up the news, and now you’ve got the other team members frustrated, worried and asking a lot of questions about how she’ll be replaced and what will happen next. How can you make sure this scenario plays out more smoothly for you?
- Make communication clear. The last thing you want is for the team to find out after others do that one of their own has resigned. It will breed resentment and distrust — why didn’t you tell them? What else have you kept from them? What will happen next? Will they have to fill in for the person who left, taking on their work? For how long? The minute you find out a team member has resigned, consider these and any other questions people may have, and do what you can to answer them so you can make the other team members feel secure and that you’ve addressed their needs.
- Have a plan. Similar to what’s stated above, before addressing the team … before anyone even resigns, know how you’ll handle the resignation of a team member. Will you need to have other team members fill in the gap left? How will you compensate for the added work? How long until you get that person replaced? Will you use a staffing agency in the meantime so the other employees don’t feel overburdened? While you may have to tweak the plan according to who leaves and under what circumstances, it will help alleviate unease and make for a smoother transition if you have a blueprint in place.
- Get the team’s input. As you deal with an employee’s resignation, ask his team members what they need. This is a golden opportunity for them voice concerns they may have kept silent about until now … perhaps they’ve felt they needed someone on the team with more experience in a certain area, or they want to make sure they have a team member whose strengths match those of the person leaving. When you ask them what they need in the absence of a team member, you’re demonstrating you want to listen and truly hear what they have to say.
Announcing a resignation never feels great, but the expert recruiters at PrideStaff Thousand Oaks can help you with the transition, from making the initial statement to hiring temporary help to finding the perfect long-term candidate for the job.