Employees: How to Have a Successful Exit Interview

two suits walking down a street

Over the past few days, we’ve gone over the much debated exit interview, focusing on employer’s side of things and helping folks decide whether or not the exit interview is the right tool for them.

Since the employee’s perspective is just as important in the exit interview as the employer’s–they are, after all, the ones being interviewed–we thought it would only make sense to talk about how you can successfully “exit” your job as you move on to the next step in your career.

Take a look below:

  • Be honest, but not brutal. Honesty is essential when it comes to having a successful exit interview. However, try to keep your level of honesty in check. There may be plenty of things you’d like to say about a colleague or supervisor, but it is better to stick to the facts and leave the colorful complaints out if you want your criticism to be taken seriously.
  • Keep it professional. You may be leaving your job, but that doesn’t mean your former employer will go away for good. Avoid going too over the top with negative criticism. There is no need to beat down on your former employer and let them know everything you hate about them, especially if you still want a recommendation from them. Keep things professional unless you want to kiss that recommendation goodbye.
  • Explain the good and the bad. When it comes to being criticized, employers are no different from you. Try to mix things up when giving them feedback. Mixing in the good and bad can help to soften the blow of your criticisms, as well as prevent your employer from thinking you are just jaded and bitter about them. In turn, they will be more likely to accept what you’re saying rather than shrugging it off as pointless banter.

Exit interviews may not be the highlight of your career, but going into one with a positive outlook and a sense of professionalism is a great way to tie up any loose ends and ensure that you are ready to move on to the next step in your career

Have you ever had an exit interview? What advice would you add to our list? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!

photo credit: K.G.23 via photopin cc

Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part III)

speed interviewing

Over the past few days, we’ve been discussing the practice of exit interviews.

As we mentioned, the world of HR is pretty divided when it comes to implementing exit interviews, which is why we’ve decided to outline the pros and cons in order to give you a better idea of what you should look for when deciding if exit interviews are right for you.

Now that we’ve gone through the pros and cons, it only makes sense for us to go a little more in depth with a few tips on how to run a successful exit interview, as well as several alternatives should you decide to go a different route. Take a look below:

Exit interview tips 

  • Mandatory but not pushy. If you want to conduct exit interviews, then it is best to not make them optional. More often than not, your employees probably won’t want to go through the trouble of an exit interview.

    That being said, don’t be pushy when it comes to administering the exit interview. Not only will it leave a bad impression on some employees, but it’s most likely not worth it if they come into the interview with a bitter mindset (especially those who already quit on the spot).

  • Who’s conducting? It’s best to leave the exit interview to HR or a third party. While it might sound like a great idea to have their supervisor conduct the interview, if the supervisor had something to do with a person leaving, a third party will help lead to a more productive and honest exit interview.
  • A “no repercussions” policy. Make it clear from the beginning that there will be no repercussions for what they say in the exit interview. This will give them the peace of mind that they won’t miss out on their next job due to a bad recommendation, as well as hopefully give you the honest feedback you want.

Alternatives to the exit interview 

  • The exit “conversation”. If you like the idea of exit interviews but find the formalities a little too much or disingenuous, then you might want to consider the exit conversation. This casual approach helps to ease the tension because of its informality, allowing you to gain valuable, honest insights, and prevent your employee from thinking they’re just part of the “big data” now. 
  • The follow-up. This one comes from Humetrics CEO and TLNT contributor, Mel Kleiman. Mel suggests waiting until your employee is settled into their new job before you contact them. If they find that their new job is less than satisfactory, simply checking in and letting them know they’re missed may persuade them to come back.
  • Re-recruiting. If you don’t like the idea of dealing with employees after they’ve left, you should try convincing them to stay while they’re still an employee. Re-recruiting is a great way to prevent turnover because it tells your employees that you are looking out for their best interest even before they consider leaving.

Are exit interviews worth it or would you rather choose one of the alternatives above? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: Samuel Mann via photopin cc

Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part II)

entrance to old employer

Yesterday, we started our series on exit interviews.

As we mentioned, take a survey among the HR world, and you’ll find that opinions over the merits and disadvantages of exit interviews run all over the board. As such, it can be hard for those outside of the debate to really make an educated decision on whether or not exit interviews are right for them.

That’s why we thought we’d give you a brief guide on the matter. We already talked a little bit about the pros, so to balance things out, we thought it would only make sense to give you the cons as well. Take a look below:

The Cons of Exit Interviews 

  • Misleading feedback. In a perfect world, all the feedback we would get during an exit interview would actually be useful. Unfortunately, though, that isn’t always the case. 

    Even though your employee is leaving, it doesn’t mean that they’ll be honest and straightforward with you on the time they spent working in the company. In some instances, this can be because they’re afraid of how it will affect your future recommendation, or perhaps because they’re just too jaded/burnt out and don’t feel the need to go through the exit interview process. 

    As a result, you’ll most likely get answers along the lines of “everything was great, it just didn’t work out” to “I hate this place and would never consider working here again,” both of which provide little to no concrete feedback that you can actually use to improve your company.

  • Shows lack of foresight. Another issue that is raised when it comes to exit interviews is that it shows a lack of foresight on the part of the company. It’s obviously much too late to actually do anything to keep your employee from leaving, and taking the time to prevent future hires from going down the same road seems like a disingenuous effort to tie up loose ends on the part of the former employee. 

    As a result, you end up actually putting your employer brand at risk in some cases. Those who are strongly against exit interviews believe that a proper strategy should’ve been put in place way before the employee ever thought of leaving, which in turn would’ve most likely prevented the turnover from ever happening, saving you the trouble of dealing with any exit interviews.

On Tuesday, we’ll go a little deeper into exit interviews and give you some tips on how to conduct them, as well as alternatives you can take. In the meantime, what do you think about these cons? Are they valid? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc

Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part I)

highway signs on a grey background

When we think about what goes on in the world of HR, we tend to focus on the hiring, recruiting, and managing aspects of the department.

But there is a fourth element to HR that we tend to neglect. We are, of course, talking about the importance of how a company and their HR department handles when an employee leaves or wants to leave.

One way to handle employee turnovers is by conducting an exit interview. However, take a look around the web, and you’ll find dozens of opinions on exit interviews that sway from calling them a super valuable tool to something that isn’t even worth mentioning.

To help you navigate the conversation, we thought we would go ahead and outline some of the pros and cons associated with exit interviews. For today, we’ll focus on the pros of exit interviews. Take a look below:

The Pros of Exit Interviews 

Check back tomorrow when we give you our cons list on exit interviews. In the mean time, what do you think are the advantages of exit interviews? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc