7 big reasons people leave their jobs


A changing economy and changing attitudes about work have resulted in some new reasons rising to the top of the list of why employees leave — giving you clues about how you’ll want to frame your appeal to job-hunters.
HR consultant Right Management asked 1,308 people why they left their jobs in the last year. Here’s how they answered (numbers add up to more than 100% because some people said they left for more than one reason):

  • Downsizing or restructuring (54%);
  • Sought new challenges or opportunities (30%);
  • Ineffective leadership (25%);
  • Poor relationship with manager (22%);
  • To improve work/life balance (21%);
  • Contributions to the company were not valued (21%);
  • Better compensation and benefits (18%). 

At one time, having a bad boss seemed to always show up as the No. 1 reason, but these days, people are more likely to leave because of a layoff. (Still, though, the bad-boss reasons —  “ineffective leadership” and “poor relationship with manager” — are near the top.)
What the numbers show
The numbers seem to indicate that if you’re recruiting, plan to see more and more people who’ve been caught in a downsizing shuffle. And plan to appeal to them by emphasizing the stability and growth opportunities your organization features. Job-hunters’ antennae will be picking up on that, especially in this economy.
Apart from that, you’ll want to go with many of the same strategies you’ve probably been using:

  • having candidates meet with potential supervisors to test the chemistry
  • talking about — but not promising — avenues for advancement, and
  • describing the highlights of your benefits package, over and above just salary concerns.