Does Your Employer Want To Know How To Keep You

Does Your Employer Want To Know How To Keep You

Many organizations in both the federal and private sectors are initiating “stay interviews” to learn how to keep their employees from leaving. The idea is that instead of waiting until an employee leaves and conducting an exit interview to discover what might have been done to keep an employee, the stay interview allows employers to collect information designed to retain their talent. Generally, stay interviews explore what employees like about the organization—and what they would like to see changed—with a goal of improving employee engagement and retention.

If your supervisor or someone from Human Resources tells you that they would like to conduct a stay interview, don’t panic! This is not a performance review nor does it mean that you should start looking for another job. Here are some things to know about stay interviews.

Stay interview questions generally focus on three specific areas:

  • What issues in the organization are hurting your productivity?
  • How can the organization help you grow — especially professional advancement?
  • What does the organization need to do to keep you engaged and productive going forward?

Stay interview questions are usually open-ended — that is, they can’t be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.” The typical stay interview is a structured format.

Here is a list of questions that may be asked in a stay interview:

  1. What do you look forward to at work every day?
  2. What’s the best part of your job?
  3. What do you enjoy about your job?
  4. What do you dislike about your job?
  5. If you could change one thing about your job, what would it be?
  6. What do you like most about working here?
  7. What do you think of the way employees are recognized? What could the organization do to improve employee recognition?
  8. How could your work/life balance be improved?
  9. Are there additional benefits you would like to see added to the organization’s benefits?
  10. Where do you see yourself in the next 1-2 years? How about the next 3-5 years?
  11. What additional resources or professional development opportunities would be useful to you?
  12. What do you want to learn? What skills do you want to develop here?
  13. If there are opportunities to move up within the organization, are you interested in learning more about how to do that?
  14. What parts of your job cause you anxiety or frustration? What helps alleviate your stress?
  15. Tell me about a situation that has made you consider resigning. What prompted you to think about leaving?
  16. What does your dream job look like?
  17. What did you enjoy about the job you had before this one? What do you wish you could bring from that job to this job?
  18. What didn’t you enjoy about that job?
  19. What do you like about the organization culture?
  20. Who do you want to work with — or connect with — at the organization that you’re not currently connected to?
  21. What do you think about on your way into work?
  22. What do you think about on your way home from work?
  23. Do I say and do things that help you be more effective in your job?
  24. Is there anything I can do to be a better manager?
  25. How can I make your experience at this organization better?

When done properly, stay interviews can help you become more engaged in your role and with the organization. Organizations that conduct stay interviews generally benefit from reduced employee turnover and higher workplace morale. From an employee perspective, the opportunity to be “listened to” and “heard” is valuable. A stay interview can allow you to address issues at your current organization so that you don’t have to look for a new position.

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