Your retention stats are directly related to the quality of your leadership

Your retention stats are directly related to the quality of your leadership

17 January 2022
Gerrit Sarens
Gerrit Sarens
  • When talking about the challenges companies have nowadays, talent retention is typically one of the things mentioned.

    As talent retention is strongly related to employee engagement, we see many companies investing in all kinds of employee engagement initiatives such as improving their onboarding activities, working on their company values, boosting their internal communication, organizing team events, offering more learning & development opportunities …

    All these initiatives are good and essential to keep your top talent on board.

  • One factor is often under-estimated or even ignored: the quality of your leadership

  • Unfortunately, the well-known expressions “good people leave because of bad managers” or “people don’t leave jobs; they leave managers” are very accurate.

    There is no shortage of evidence to support this. Several studies cite leadership as critical in tapping into employee happiness and impacting retention.

    The number 1 reason employees leave a job is a bad boss or supervisor.

    Leaders who don’t engage their staff will inevitably lose them.

  • It’s simple but not easy

  • In simple terms, strong and effective leadership can improve culture, engage a workforce and instill a level of motivation and inspiration that may otherwise have been absent.

    Irrespective of what good leadership means, one of the ultimate goals of a leader is to make an employee feel appreciated, accomplished, and important to the organization's overall success.

  • Ask the right questions

  • The meaning of good leadership depends on your company, more precisely, what you ultimately want to achieve as a company and the context in which you are operating.

    There is no one-size-fits-all description of good leadership.

    Inspiration can be found in the Ambits Leadership Guide.

    More important is to ask the right questions:

    1. What makes a good leader for our company?
    2. Which leadership behavior do we need to achieve our goals?
    3. Is there a gap between the desired and the actual leadership behavior?
    4. If so, how can we make the necessary changes to improve?

    Any leadership improvement, even small steps, will benefit your employee retention.

  • Mentoring is the way forward in leadership development

  • At Ambits, we firmly believe that the right mentor can help managers to become better leaders.

    A mentor who has gone through the same leadership challenges and is strongly motivated to share his/her experience through practical advice is the most effective way to learn and build leadership competencies.

    Mentoring can be done individually or in groups; see more here.

    Contact us now to discuss this further.

Struggles of a manager

Managers are

  • not or inadequately trained in this role


    • lack self-confidence
    • don’t know how to go from being a colleague to being a boss
    • need to loosen up on the command & control leadership style
    • must let go of the (technical) expert status
    • cannot give or accept constructive feedback
    • feel pressure to perform as manager
    • have difficulty building relationships
    • want to be liked by everyone or want to be the ‘bad boss’
    • play the hero
  • are struggling


    • stay too involved in operations
    • have trouble prioritizing
    • cannot delegate
    • fear conflict situations
    • disconnect from the team
    • deal with flawed strategic thinking
    • do not relate to higher management
    • lack clear communication skills
    • remain not self-aware
    • avoid difficult conversations
    • miss political antennas
    • ...
  • capable of more


    • need mental preparation as successor
    • need to be able to lead big changes ahead
    • need to learn to be emotionally resilient and in control
    • need to learn to make big decisions fast without all the information
    • must become persuasive presenters
    • need to learn how to cultivate their own personal brand
    • need to learn how to lead by example
    • manage by trust, not by fear
    • need to overly develop empathy
    • ...
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