When Good People Leave

When Good People Leave

Big Ideas

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February 12 2020
Big Ideas
Author: Marty Fisher

I’ve been running my own business for more than twenty-five years now. Over that time, Sherpa grew from a sole proprietorship, to a corporation with three locations and over 26 full-time employees. 

With more staff comes an increased probability of turnover. Recently a couple of dynamic, young employees left to try new things. 

At first, I was mildly disappointed, but that disappointment quickly turned to pride. Why would I be proud?
Ultimately, I realized that former employees can be (or are) advocates for your brand. The experiences our two employees had with us may translate into new business opportunities and increase Sherpa’s brand awareness.

How can they be advocates? 

First, when someone leaves to work somewhere else, they take what they learned at Sherpa and apply that skill and knowledge at their new employer’s business. 

Sherpa provided them with great mentoring, training and the opportunity to succeed in their day to day… that means they are immediately productive for their new employers. 

If nothing else, the new company will be dazzled by their new employee’s skills - and that casts Sherpa in a favourable light. A light that can shine by way of a comment to a colleague by the new employer. Something like, “I just hired Ellen. She used to work at Sherpa Marketing and she’s doing a fantastic job for us.” A comment like that could spell opportunity for Sherpa.

Sherpa is a place where smart people take the time to impart intelligence and know-how to anyone who cares to work hard and learn.

Where will they go in their career? 

Second, another employee departed to pursue an MBA. What are the benefits of his departure? What’s the silver lining? First, beside creating a battle-hardened marketer – Sherpa is the place where he earned his marketing and business intelligence stripes. And when he’s doing his group work you can be sure that his group members are all impressed by the depth of experience that he has. You can be sure that he credits his former colleagues as his drill Sergeants.

Interestingly, the employee who is pursuing his MBA may end up being a University educator. He will always remember what he learned at Sherpa and more than likely, will refer to it as a great place to work, thus exposing a fresh batch of potential Sherpa employees or potential clients for years to come.

I’ve always tried very hard to be a strong advocate and mentor to the people that choose to ply their trade here at Sherpa. Sometimes people leave, but their departure is almost always done with words of advice and encouragement. Advocacy happens in many ways – sending former employees off on the best of terms is just another way to build your brand.

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