Ah, nothing beats those sunny Wednesday mornings in August. Enjoying a cup of coffee after an early morning run. Scrolling through my LinkedIn feed to ease into the working day.

 And then stumbling upon an announcement for this HBR article “Why People Quit Their Jobs”.

It was the tagline of the announcement “Tech surveillance and social media monitoring points to new triggers” that really caught my eye. I almost spilled my precious coffee. Would I have not had my morning run already, this tagline would have really woken me up. 

The article talks about companies that use ‘predictive intelligence’ to keep an eye out for employees who may consider leaving. They track badge swipes to find out whether an employee is potentially going for job interviews. They have external companies monitor the employee’s social media feeds for signs of job hunting activity. 

This allows those companies to then apply ‘preemptive intervention’ to keep employee turnover rate and associated costs as low as possible. 


The article also mentions that the number one reason for people to leave their job is their Boss.

I dare to intelligently predict that a few years from now research will show that the number one reason for people to leave their job is their Big Brother Boss. 

Don’t get me wrong, I am all for using technology and data analytics to make our lives easier. But in this case I wonder whether those companies are not missing out on a simple and least expensive way to find out whether employees are considering leaving.

Ask. Listen. IRL. 

In real life. In a face-to-face conversation. Between human beings. 

Scary, I know. I talked about the value of having good conversations, between managers and employees, and between colleagues, in an earlier post about Performance Reviews.

Maybe investing in learning how to have good conversations will help in maintaining a healthy turnover rate in your company. More so than using Big Brother tactics. There will always be employee turnover. If your turnover rate is 0% I would also worry if I were you.

And here’s another idea: when an employee hands in his or her notice, congratulate them and throw them the biggest goodbye party you possibly can! Wish them well. And: follow them throughout their careers outside your company. When you see or hear about their progress in their new environment, let them know you’re glad they are doing so well.

People who enjoyed the time they spent at your company, and decide to leave anyway for whatever reason, will be loyal to your company long after they have left. They will continue to talk about you as a good company to work for.

And you will have no trouble filling the gaps they have left.

Illustration via Shutterstock license