In today's relatively healthy job market, many companies are struggling to retain their top employees. For some workers, leaving a job boils down to getting a better opportunity or perhaps more money elsewhere. But for others, it's a matter of personal dissatisfaction with their current employers. If you want to hang onto your most valued players in the face of increasing competition, you must understand the factors that typically drive workers to leave. Here are a few to be aware of.

1. You offer no flexibility

These days, workers at all career levels are struggling to maintain a decent work-life balance. And part of the reason boils down to a glaring lack of flexibility on their employers' part. If your company offers little to no flexibility in terms of scheduling, sick days, or personal time, then you shouldn't be surprised when staff members start jumping ship.

Woman handing over resignation letter.


On the other hand, if you're willing to give your workers (especially trusted ones who have more than proven themselves) more leeway, they'll be more likely to stay on board. That could mean allowing employees to work from home more frequently, or being more accommodating to parents when their kids' schools are closed and child care is lost. It could also mean letting folks set their own hours, provided doing so doesn't disrupt your overall workflow.

2. You don't give your workers enough autonomy

Employees don't like to feel like they're being watched and supervised from the moment they walk into the office to the moment they leave. If your company promotes a culture of micromanagement, your workers are likely to grow frustrated with the fact that they aren't trusted to get their jobs done. And once their morale is zapped, they're less likely to stay on board.

The solution? Let your staff work more independently. Establish a check-in system of sorts so that managers are kept in the loop and employees are held accountable, but let your workers do their jobs without a boss looking over their shoulders.

3. You won't invest in your employees' success

Your goal in employing people at your business is to ensure that the work your company needs completed actually gets done. But if you make your focus all about the business and not about employees as individuals, they're apt to get turned off very quickly.

A better bet, therefore, is to take steps to show your workers that you want them to be successful and advance their careers. That could mean paying for courses that help them boost their skills, or sending them to conferences where they can network and learn more about the industry. And if money is an issue, it could be a simple matter of making seasoned employees more available to junior folks so that they benefit from having on-site mentors.

When the economy is booming, losing key employees becomes dangerously easy. If you'd rather not have to go through the process of replacing valued workers, keep the above points in mind and take steps to address them. Otherwise, you might find yourself woefully understaffed before you know it.