Top Reasons Why Your Employees Leave

No matter what industry you’re in, the health and strength of your business are dependent on your employees. In the healthcare industry and medical field, however, this becomes even more accurate, since high-quality staff can be much harder to find and train.

Unfortunately, many clinics and medical offices are losing employees, or morale is remarkably low, which can impact productivity and hurt the business. So, with that in mind, we want to take a closer look at why this is happening so that the problems can be corrected. Thankfully, none of these issues are insurmountable, nor do they take a substantial investment. Let’s discuss what it takes to retain the best employees (hint: it’s not money).

#1 Relationship with Boss/Supervisor

There’s a saying in HR departments – “employees don’t leave companies, they leave managers.” Typically, workers don’t decide to leave because they don’t like the job. Instead, they don’t have a good relationship with their boss or supervisor, so there’s no incentive to stick around.

There are a few critical elements within a manager/employee relationship that, if improved, could help a clinic or hospital retain staff.


If an employee has a problem, who does that person report to? Does the supervisor discuss with the employee, or is it an impersonal interaction (i.e., leaving notes)? If nurses and other staff feel that they can’t communicate with a supervisor, then it can seem like they don’t matter (or their work doesn’t), so they leave.


Everyone likes getting noticed for doing good work, especially when a person goes above and beyond the call of duty. Unfortunately, recognition can be hard to come by, especially in hospitals or clinics with staffing shortages. Small reminders of appreciation can go a long way, both from supervisors and coworkers. Breed a culture of recognition among all employees, and that will create a stronger bond between everyone.

Boss vs. Leader

Finally, when a supervisor treats subordinates like they are beneath him or her, that can cause turnover faster than anything else. Managers need to recognize the value of all employees and view them as a valuable resource. A good illustration is that a boss tells someone what to do, while a leader shows them.

#2 Relationship with Coworkers

No one likes dealing with drama at work. Unfortunately, in some facilities, interpersonal relationships between coworkers can lead to a toxic work environment. Here are a few tips for creating a drama-free (and community-minded) workplace.

  • Address issues immediately – if an employee files a complaint about a coworker, you need to handle that as quickly as possible. Letting it fester can create more problems down the road.
  • Encourage camaraderie – as we mentioned above, it’s crucial to create a culture of appreciation and recognition. Coworkers are equals that are working toward the same goal. Remove competitive attitudes and reward cooperation.

#3 Unchallenged by Work

Employees these days, particularly millennials, are looking for meaning in the work they do. This group is dissatisfied with punching a clock and collecting a paycheck. If the job is grueling or unchallenging, it can lead to a heightened desire to leave.

One way to alleviate this issue is to offer additional training programs for staff members. Enable employees to learn new skills that can not only help them perform better but make them more valuable to the organization.

#4 No Growth Opportunities

This problem directly relates to the one above. A significant reason why medical staff can feel unchallenged by work is that they have no potential for growth or advancement. Most modern employees don’t want to be stuck in the same position for years on end. Instead, they prefer progress and growth.

Again, training programs and opportunities can help mitigate this problem, but some clinics and hospitals are limited in their potential. Another part of this issue is salaries – certain positions are capped, and if there are no openings for higher-level jobs, staff may leave.

One tactic that can help employees feel more in control is to have them write out their job descriptions. Not only that, but this practice can eliminate ambiguity and confusion about what’s expected of workers.

#5 Company Direction

Job satisfaction is more than just fulfillment in the work being done. Another element is the value of the company itself. For the most part, medical staff are in the healthcare industry because they want to help others. However, if a clinic or hospital is putting profits or insurers over patients, employees may want to leave as a result.

Bottom Line: Pay Closer Attention to Your Employees – Before It’s Too Late

No matter what, now is the perfect time to talk to staff members about their job satisfaction. Some of the best questions to ask are:

  • Are you satisfied with this position?
  • How could things be better?
  • What would you like to change about the workplace (or supervisor)?
  • Which elements of the position do you love?
  • Which elements do you dislike?

By understanding what your employees want from their job, it’s much easier to anticipate their needs and address them. Failure to do so can be costly.


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