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Should I Stay or Should I Go? - 5 Reasons Why Employees Leave



Joe Gonzalez
Branch Manager
1st Metropolitan Mortgage
Phone: 610-351-7510
Fax: 610-351-7810

Did you know that replacing an employee could cost you up to three times that employee's annual salary? That's according to Recent studies cite productivity, recruitment, and training costs associated with hiring new employees as major contributors to this surprisingly expensive statistic. More importantly, employees take knowledge, experience, and contacts with them to their next company, often a direct competitor, as most people tend to stay in the same or similar field.

And while many companies are implementing retention programs to recognize and limit the cost of employee turnover, research reveals that few companies truly understand why employees leave in the first place. According to Leigh Branham, author of The Seven Hidden Reasons Employees Leave, 90% are directly linked, not simply to money issues, but to issues involving their job, manager, culture, or work environment.

The following are a few of the top reasons why people quit their jobs, according to research from the Harvard Business Review, HR Magazine, and other recent studies. Use it as a guide to recognize signs of unhappy employees and to cut down on the major expense associated with employee turnover:

1) Stress: Departing employees reported that stress from overwork or a work-life imbalance is a big reason for calling it quits. They might smile through it all, but if employees are consistently working late, working through lunch or on weekends, you may have a stressed out employee on your hands. Combine this with a personal crisis at home, and the pressure can be overwhelming.

2) Unrecognized: Many employees quit their jobs because they perceive, whether it's real or not, that their work is unappreciated. Causes include being paid the same as or less than poor performers or new employees with less experience; hiring or promoting outsiders instead of from within the company; and even an inkling of favoritism could create tensions that drive some employees to quit.

3) Money: Many employees don't just quit, they move on to what they perceive as a better opportunity - which may or may not be true. Either way, you can lose great employees who do not see advancement opportunities within your company. By knowing your employees' career goals, you may find that the best path for long-term growth is in another area of your company.

4) Motivation: People don't quit jobs, right? They quit managers. You've heard it before. Well, it turns out that it's actually true. According to studies, employees seek feedback, not just criticism. They want coaching and direction, assistance and communication. When they don't get it, they leave. Think about it this way: Have you ever sat down with an employee and asked what motivates him or her? Do you know why they come to work every day? These are much easier questions to ask than, "Why are you quitting?"

5) Company Culture: Former employees often describe their previous job as a "bad fit," a code word for a number of problems that are often difficult to recognize until it's too late. Studies suggest that by establishing clear job descriptions and utilizing personality assessment tools (such as DiSC® profiling), you can better match an employee's specific skills and talents to his or her job.

If you'd like more information about DiSC® profiling or would like to discuss more about this fascinating topic, give me a call. I'm always looking for ways we can improve our businesses together and be more successful.

Remember that we are your Allentown Experts for mortgage refinance & purchase transactions. Trust your clients to 1st Metropolitan Mortgage!

For help or questions contact:

Joe Gonzalez

Senior Loan Consultant -  NMLS #126036
GMH Mortgage Services, LLC
625 W. Ridge Pike, Building C, Suite 100 | Conshohocken, PA  19428 | Direct: 610-355-8039 |  Cell: 610-739-6563

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Comment balloon 10 commentsJoe Gonzalez • May 19 2008 06:44AM


6. Opportunity.  Some find that opportunity they have been quietly looking for.

Posted by Associate Broker Falmouth MA Cape Cod Heath Coker, Heath Coker Robert Paul Properties Falmouth MA ( & about 12 years ago

I can relate to that.  Especially # 4.  The Office Manager at my old brokerage retired and they hired a house-wife who was in the right place at the right time and it went down hill from there.  Such a stress case she could give a bottle of Valium high blood pressure.

Posted by Gary McAdams (GMAC Schwartz Property Sales) about 12 years ago

The employee thinks the grass is always greener seems never to be or only in certain parts. 


- Bryan Flynn

Posted by Bryan Flynn, Central Mass and Worcester Mortgages (Regency Mortgage Corporation) about 12 years ago

Enjoyed the talking points. Great post.

Posted by C Tann-Starr (Tann Starr & Associates, Inc.) about 12 years ago

Joe... #1 was the reason why I left one of my jobs years ago.  Now, being in real estate there is no way I'm going back to the 9 to 5 work schedule.

Posted by Valerie Osterhoudt, ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889 (Johnson Real Estate, Inc.) about 12 years ago

Joe, I think this is primarily correct, people leave looking for better opportunities or where they feel recognized or important. Most that leave it is never about strickly the money.

Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) about 12 years ago

The DiSC® profiling is amazing.  I did mine when I first started with Keller Williams and again about a year later.  It's really a great way to check your growth (both professional and personal) and give direction to all phases of your life.

Posted by Laura Giannotta, Your Realtor Down the Shore! (Keller Williams Realty - Atlantic Shore ) about 12 years ago

Joe, this is a great breakdown, I agree that often an employee will leave for opportunity.  There is just no opportunity to be more than what they already are doing.  They are nearly the same age as a manager or boss, or whatever, other than that it is a pretty inclusive list!

Posted by Tony & Darcy Cannon, The C Team (Aubrey and Associates Realty) about 12 years ago

Heath - Opportunity is covered under #3 - although you are correct it could be that something they've dreamed of doing for a long time, although less money, could change their mind although this is rare.

Gary - SO TRUE!! Unqualified person to run the office just doens't work. Move on!!

Valerie - Good for you.  Keep on moving forward.

Laura - To all of those who haven't done a DISC test yet, what are you waiting for?!

Tony & Darcy - True, sometimes there is a ceiling & people want more.  That's why I left my last company.  I wanted more freedom & the opportunity to run my own show on my own terms. 

Posted by Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563 (CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029) about 12 years ago

Whenever I read about problems with turnover, I remember the line in Proverbs...."The human spirit can endure a sick body, but who can bear a crushed spirit?" People want to be a part of something bigger. They want to know that their vote counts, and just as importantly, they want everyone to know that they perform their civic duty. The workplace should follow this guide. When we bring on board newly hired people, we should spend time telling them how they fit into the broader scope. Do we show them how their positions are critical to the overall success of the organization? More likely than not, we simply take them to their work areas and say, "This is your job." Obviously, the tasks they perform are critical to our success; otherwise, we wouldn't have created them. Do we tell the stonecutter that he is building a majestic cathedral? On the other hand, do we tell him his job is to cut the stone to specifications? A few words can make a big difference. Michael L. Gooch, SPHR Author of Wingtips with Spurs: Cowboy Wisdom for Today's Business Leaders 

Posted by Michael L. Gooch about 12 years ago