You’re Not a Mind Reader

In today’s healthcare world, staying closely connected to your staff is crucial to retention and engagement. One of the best ways to do this is by conducting stay interviews. It’s a great way to help you understand what is working and what isn’t. Stay interviews help staff see that you are interested in them, their opinions, and committed to their personal development.

This past week, I taught a class on conducting effective stay interviews. Several of the attendees had conducted interviews as part of their assignment. They shared stories of surprises they encountered from doing the interviews. Some were great surprises and validated engagement and loyalty to the organization. But, a few revealed alarming situations that had slipped past the manager unnoticed. In the latter, the managers were shocked and concerned, but now keenly aware of what they needed to do.

Don’t Make Assumptions

One participant was resistant to doing the stay interviews explaining, “I already know what they’re going to say. They want more money, and I can’t give it to them. So why ask?” 

There are a few red flags inherent in this attitude, not the least of which is assuming that money is the only motivator. When leaders assume that money is the only motivator, they miss opportunities to provide meaningful recognition and challenges and improve levels of employee engagement.

Beyond the money assumption, this leader honestly felt he knew what his staff was thinking. With this assumption, he didn’t need to have conversations. We build a lot of skills in our leadership development courses but mind-reading isn’t one of them. To make progress and build strong teams, leaders must remain humble learners which requires asking questions and listening to the answers. Leaders willing to remain humble learners help their teams to reach new heights.

Learn more about developing your leadership skills and conducting successful stay interviews in our course, Be the Leader Nobody Wants to Leave

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