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The Stay Interview: Retaining Your Top Talent

By   Lisa Fitzgerald

November 17, 2017

You likely conducted interviews on your employees when you first hired them. If you’ve had employees leave, maybe you’ve conducted exit interviews. But there’s another type of interview that often gets overlooked: the stay interview.

While exit interviews are conducted when an employee leaves to help management get a better understanding of what went wrong or why the employee left, stay interviews give management an idea of how they can help their employees stay with their organization.

Stay interviews can help management gain a good understanding of what the organization is doing right that makes employees want to stay, but it can also help determine what it is that would cause an employee to leave. This gives management a chance to identify strengths and weaknesses, and to work on improving those before it’s too late.

On top of that, stay interviews can help build stronger relationships within an organization, which can ultimately lead to more trust throughout. When employees realize their thoughts and needs are being considered, they are often more likely to have positive attitudes and relationships. Following up on information learned in the interviews can help solidify this.

Types of Questions
Common questions that can create a worthwhile interview include:

  • What keeps you coming back to work here every day?
  • What do you look forward to here?
  • If you could change something about your job, what would it be and why?
  • What would make your job more satisfying?
  • What do you want to see from upper level management/staff?
  • What might cause you to leave the organization?
  • What can the organization do more of for you?
  • What do I do next?

Stay interviews can be a powerful tool to help you improve work-life for your employees, and to keep them around for years to come. When stay interviews and the information obtained in them are acted on properly, you’re more likely to retain your employees and avoid those exit interviews.