#261: When capable employees leave

What happens?

(Will working from home and flexible working schedules usher in a new era of micro-management? The growth in employee surveillance and monitoring software suggests that… yes, of course it will.)


Let’s explore one of those vicious cycles so often found in organizations. Management’s reaction to who stays and who leaves triggers this cycle.

Incompetent and inexperienced employees need rules and regulations to function at an acceptable level. But capable, experienced employees feel stifled in an environment where they are constantly told what to do and how to do it. And so they up and leave.

As the balance in the workforce swings to fewer capable and more incompetent employees, mistakes and inefficiencies increase. This serves to confirm management’s suspicion that workers are incompetent or subversive.

Managers respond by tightening their hold over workers, forcing the last of the capable ones to run for the exits.

Incompetent workers are less likely to confront managers. So what happens next?

Managers end up believing that those who stay prefer a highly regimented work place.

Welcome to my side of the nonsense divide.