why employees stay and why they go - long term employee satisfaction questions Mike Cardus

Supporting an organization through an interesting experiment. The company has a ~28% turnover rate, which is not too bad, and they want to reduce that to about 20% in 2-years. We decided to hold a series of ‘Stay Interviews’ to create a continuum of stories about employee satisfaction and dissatisfaction with people who have remained with the company for 5+years. These stay interviews’ goal is to understand what is working to increase and what is not working to decrease.

Framing our thinking in Herzberg and motivational theory.

Satisfiers and Dissatisfiers being different, we created a series of questions documenting qualitative and quantitative responses.

Employee Satisfaction and Dissatisfaction
  • Company policy administration
  • Supervision
  • Work Conditions
  • Salary
  • Achievement
  • Recognition
  • Work Itself
  • Responsibility

Below are the questions we are using. I’ll share data and progress points when we complete all the stay interviews.

What causes you to stay with the organization?
  1. How long have you worked at _____?
  2. Have you actively looked for work elsewhere (applied, accepted an interview)?
  3. What happened to have you look elsewhere?
  4. What supported your decision to stay?
  5. How would your best closest friend describe your work?
  6. What are some challenges you face daily?
  7. Miracle question … You leave this discussion, do what you usually do at work, then go home and end your night. While asleep, a miracle occurs, and the challenge(s) you shared is lessened, not gone. You arrive at work. You do not know anything is different because you were asleep; what is the 1st interaction or evidence observation you notice that helps you realize things are different?
  8. Scale … Scale of 1 – 10, with 10 being a miracle has happened and 1 being the opposite. Where are you on the scale?
  9. Validate … what is working within ____ that keeps you at the number?
  10. When you are +2 on the scale, what is different or better? How will your manager or workmates notice these +2 changes in you?
  11. What can _____ do more of that is working to keep you here?
  12. What can _____ do less of that may hurt your desire to remain?
  13. What would you tell someone who was considering leaving _____?

The idea of trust, felt-fairness, liberty, being unencumbered to complete your work without somebody (or manipulative procedure) constricting you, are what most people want from their employer.