Lack of Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace — A Major Reason Why Employees Quit!

Summary– As organizations witness The Great Resignation, it becomes vital for leaders to rethink their talent retention strategy and leverage an emotionally-connected culture. To make sure employees feel included, emotionally intelligent leaders must acknowledge each individual’s contributions, assign them more collaborative projects, celebrate wins collectively, and invest time to get to know each other outside of work.

Read the full blog to learn how lack of emotional intelligence in the workplace results in employee turnover.

Employee loyalty is indispensable to business success. However, in today’s corporate ecosystem, a trend of job quits and layoffs has muddled the relationship between organizations and their employees.

While there are a multitude of reasons why employees either voluntarily leave their organizations or plan to do it in the near future, lack of support from their immediate managers makes their decision to quit a lot easier.

In fact, Gallup found that 70% of employee engagement is determined by the manager. The primary job of a leader is to promote a safe environment where everyone in the team feels valued, heard, and shows up on their own. When employees feel they are valued and listened to, they are unlikely to switch jobs.

As organizations witness The Great Resignation, it becomes vital for leaders to rethink their talent retention strategy. That is where an emotionally-connected culture comes into play.

What Can Employers Do to Retain the Existing Talent?

According to a 2021 Gallup survey, employees that are not emotionally or cognitively connected to their workplaces do not hesitate to move on for a slightly better offer. When it comes to employee retention, managers need to enhance their people management skills. To put it simply, leaders must prioritize emotional intelligence.

Why is Emotional Intelligence important?

Employees Are More Productive under Empathetic Leaders

A high-performing, trusting, and caring culture is built when employees feel valued, supported, and acknowledged by their managers. Emotionally adept leaders understand the impact an impolite and harsh comment can have on their team members. They know where to draw the line and strike a balance. If leaders are stern with their employees, it results in a work environment rife with tension and conflict. Similarly, if they go overboard with sharing personal and/or irrelevant matters with the team, it might be interpreted as unprofessional and casual.

Leaders That Display Empathy and Compassion Are Trusted by Their Team Members

Empathy and kindness from the leaders towards their employees enhances team productivity. Since emotionally intelligent managers know how to deal with adversities, they’re more likely to retain their humility even in uncomfortable conversations. Understanding what is important to employees results in creating a more desirable environment, not only to retain existing employees but also to attract new ones.

Emotional Intelligence Skills Allow Leaders to Create an Environment of Positivity, Belonging, and Inclusion in the Workplace

The new-age workplace is all about having pleasant surroundings to get the work done. Hence, leaders must create a psychologically safe space where employees are encouraged to bring up both work and non-work-related queries confidently. Leaders with a high emotional vocabulary focus on building strong human bonds at work. Instead of constantly micromanaging their teams, these leaders encourage their peers to ask questions and have a clear discussion to resolve the issues at hand.

To make sure employees feel included, emotionally intelligent leaders must acknowledge each individual’s contributions, assign them more collaborative projects, celebrate wins collectively, and invest time to get to know each other outside of work. All these factors collectively prepare employees for a long and successful career at any organization.

In What Ways Does Lack of Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace Result in Employee Turnover?

Leaders with low emotional intelligence are stubborn and rigid when it comes to new ideas. They are poor listeners. They usually have fixed opinions on how specific projects should be handled. By doing so, they set an undesirable example for others in the team, resulting in a toxic work environment.

Likewise, leaders who do not build communication opportunities into their schedules such as one-on-one or monthly meet-ups eventually start experiencing loss in motivation and productivity, and cohesion amongst their teams.

Gone are the days when paychecks were enough to keep employees hooked to their jobs. In the era of mass resignations, employees seek purpose, fulfillment, and meaning in their jobs. Thus, employers must reassess their work policies and take steps toward boosting employee engagement. Besides, taking initiatives to showcase their human side goes a long way in enhancing overall well-being and belongingness. Based on what employees are expecting, it is always good to enroll employees in personalized training programs where employees can feel the comfort to be themselves without fear of judgment and prejudice. Such programs can help them prepare for a long and successful career growth at an organization.

Organizations That Focus on Happier Workplaces and Work-Life Balance Will Succeed down the Line!

When it comes to easing employee turnover, leadership skills like resilience, employee wellbeing, open communication, diversity, and inclusion play a major role. Ill temperament, lack of interpersonal skills, lack of boundaries, playing biases, and a bunch of different other reasons are mostly cited in exit interviews. Employers need to understand how important it is for employees to feel connected, valued, and respected at work.

Now more than ever, leaders need to remain calm, listen to employee feedback, and leverage it to make necessary changes to their employment practices.

Working in fear does not bring ethics, commitment, and passion to work. Irrespective of their cadre in the organization, leaders must build rapport with their teams. A comfortable work environment is not only good to have but a must-have in the quest to attract and retain the best talent. New generations of workers care more about having pleasant surroundings to get work done than anything else.

Wrapping it Up!

Leaders set the tone for their direct reportees. Bearing that in mind, they should keep a track of how they’re showing up both verbally and non-verbally. Apart from shaping a healthy and balanced work culture, there is now a need to probe into the emotional readiness of employees and how well they would fit into the organization.

When it comes to fostering Emotional Intelligence at work, leaders need to understand that it is something that needs a top-down approach. Leaders need to model the behavior and react with empathy, support, and understanding. Besides actionable strategies, leading organizations are enrolling for training programs such as KNOLSKAPE’s simulation-based course ‘Developing Emotional Intelligence at the Workplace (EI@Work)’ which enhances employees’ ability to understand and manage their own emotions, build meaningful work relationships, and overcome challenges in the process.

Designed using the ‘Learn’ , ‘Apply’ and ‘Reflect’ principles, the EI@Work simulation allows leaders to understand their emotional states better, appreciate differences, resolve conflicts and nurture strong relationships, thereby resulting in lower attrition, and productive and happier employees. Let’s connect, in case you’re interested in a quick demo?



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