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  • Writer's pictureVicky Blake

What is a Stay Interview, I hear you ask?

Updated: Jan 18, 2023

Simply….it’s the opposite of an Exit Interview, which is a reactive tool designed to essentially understand why someone has decided to leave your organisation – giving you the opportunity to gather intel around what went wrong from their perspective. These can be valuable insights to then make changes in your organisation to avoid this happening again.


However, they’re also the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff!


As an employer you want to understand why people want to STAY with your business, not just why they want to leave.


Staff retention is the goal here as is creating the ideal employee experience through-out the lifecycle of their time with your business! Why would you wait until the employee has already got fed up, gone to market, secured a new opportunity and resigned?


The beauty of Stay Interviews is you are proactively engaging with the employees in the present, giving you a perfect opportunity to catch any potential issues and make changes before they become a problem.


This is retention 101.


Sounds good…where do I begin?


Firstly these are informal catchups, not formal interviews. It’s a great idea to title the Stay Interviews something jazzy to get the buy in from your team (I would not use the word ‘interview’ myself).


Hopefully you are already doing weekly 1:1 catch ups with your staff around WIP, feedback and career goals etc. These Stay Interviews should be in addition and perhaps every 6 months, certainly every 12.


The other aspect to consider is the importance of sharing relevant intel with your organisation, employees like to be heard and to see changes are being made.


The types of questions can be:

· What do you enjoy about working here?

· What do you like the least?

· What motivates you?

· What demotivates you?

· What would make your job more satisfying?

· How would you describe our company culture?

· Do you have any advise on how we could improve our culture?

· If there was something you would change about your job, what would that be?

· Why do you stay here?

· Have you thought about leaving? What stopped you?


You must also then act on the feedback. Depending on the type of feedback, this could be adding something to their PDP or making an organisational change.


So if you haven’t already, you need to add Stay Interviews to your retention toolkit. They will deepen connection and loyalty, improve your culture and ultimately, boost retention. Winning!


We all know the colloquial saying ‘happy wife | happy life’, just think, ‘happy staff | happy life’.

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