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Conduct a “Stay Interview” with Your Employees

Don’t wait until an employee is already halfway out the door to find out what might’ve convinced them to stay. Instead, regularly check in to make sure your current employees are having a good experience. Here’s how to have these “stay conversations.” First, avoid distractions. To demonstrate how seriously you take the conversation, put away your computer and phone. Next, set the context. Let your employee know this isn’t a performance review or a meeting to talk about projects, but instead a check-in to better understand their experience. You might ask, “How have you been feeling about work in general? How have you been feeling about balancing work and home? Do you feel like you’re learning and growing here? If not, is there anything I can do to improve your experience?” Then, really listen. If the person starts sharing frustrations, avoid the temptation to propose solutions. Instead, ask what you could do to address it together. Finally, agree on next steps together. If there are follow-up actions you will each take, put them in writing. And of course, thank your employee for their openness, and make yourself available for future conversations.

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