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Pays To Quit 💰

January 19, 2022


The $5K answer to employee turnover

Have you heard?
Trainual CEO Chris Ronzio offers new employees $5K… to quit.

You read that right. When a new Trainual employee hits the two-week mark, their onboarding survey asks them a simple yes or no question: do you want to stay on as an employee? Or quit, for $5K?

Originally, Trainual offered $2,500 for employees to quit. But since the policy went into effect in May 2020, no employee has taken up the offer.

So, to make sure employees really want to stay, Chris recently decided to up the ante and double the fee. That way, the money is substantial enough for employees to be covered while searching for their next job. And Trainual keeps the employees who are committed for the long run.

How does it work?
The offer was actually modeled off a similar move from Zappos. Originally launched in 2008, Tony Hsieh (former CEO of Zappos) would offer new employees a bonus if they quit in their first four weeks. The technique was designed to test employee commitment.

Trainual’s version is designed to retain top talent and build a stronger company culture. According to Chris, giving employees the option to say goodbye to the business early on is less disruptive than them leaving a year later.

Plus, when a new hire declines the $5K offer after two weeks, it’s a good sign that not only did they like what they saw at the company, they’re committed to the business for the foreseeable future.

Can this work for other companies?
Chris recommends that if a company is looking to implement a similar policy, they should already have a strong focus on company culture. Because if they already have a high turnover rate, it’s likely that their business is falling short of what they promised their employees.

But, for businesses who experience low employee turnover and wish they had caught it sooner, introducing a monetary incentive to quit could really help pinpoint those employees who will help scale the business. Not just because they’re paid to, but because they’re all-in on helping the business succeed.


Boss behaviors that make people quit

What’s happening?
People quit their jobs every day for a bunch of reasons. Maybe for $5K? 😉

But seriously, a recent Indeed survey showed that seeking a better relationship with a boss was one of the top 5 reasons for leaving a workplace. So, The Hustle surveyed nearly 300 respondents and asked if they’d ever quit a job over a bad boss. And oh yeah, they have.

These were the responses.
Some of the top boss issues that made employees leave included:

  • Demeaning comments
  • Micromanagement
  • No work-life balance
  • Poor communication

Topics like favoritism, sexism, racism, and ageism came up as well. Other themes included bosses who ignored COVID protocols, threw things, stole ideas, and demanded to know about bathroom breaks (yikes).

Does “tough love” even work?
Nope. While business cultures once admired “tough love” and used it as a motivator, research shows it actually demotivates people. And causes anxiety, emotional exhaustion, and distress in workers. In fact, a 2021 Australian study found that toxic workplaces tripled the risk of depression.  

Poor boss behavior also results in productivity losses, stress-related health expenses, and destructive employee behavior. SHRM (an HR management org) found that bad managers cost companies a startling $223B in turnover from 2014-2019.

So, what can you do?
You probably aren't throwing staplers at your employees or engaging in other toxic workplace behaviors. But you might be surprised by the little things your team needs from you to feel supported.

So start by asking your team for feedback. And offer feedback to team members who you might see engaging in less-than-ideal behaviors.

According to Gallup, when feedback is done right, managers show 8.9% greater profitability and companies experience 14.9% lower employee turnover. And a high-feedback culture will ultimately help propel the growth and culture of your company.


SEO strategy tips for SMBs

Word on the street is…
…with the new year comes new consumer trends and behavior. And to stay relevant in these consumers’ search rankings, SMBs need to adapt their SEO strategy.

A quick review
SEO stands for “search engine optimization.” In other words, it’s the process of improving the quality of your site to improve visibility in search engines like Google.

Let’s say you own a growing real estate company. When you search for “[your city name] real estate” on Google, you’re hit with hundreds of search results. If you want your site to show up as one of the top results, you need to improve your SEO strategy.

Why is SEO important?
For many of your customers, the Internet is the first place they’ll go to learn about your company. In fact, 97% of people learn more about local businesses online than anywhere else. Meaning, your online presence brings exposure to your business. And greater exposure can drive more customers.

Plus, for the majority of consumers, the journey to buying anything starts online. According to GE Capital Retail Bank, 81% of retail shoppers do online research before making a purchase.

But it’s not enough to just be online. About 75% of people never go past the first page of results on search engines. That means if you want to showcase your business to as many eyes as possible, you need to rank high in search results. And that’s where your SEO strategy comes in.

Some tips:

  1. Go for the right keywords. For SMBs, create content that focuses on long-tail keywords (AKA longer, more specific phrases). Longer keyword phrases mean people are searching for specific results. And when you use these long-tail keywords in your content, you're more likely to be the result they go to.
  2. Update your social media and Google Business Profile. Don’t leave your prospective customers guessing about what services you offer. Use keywords to fill out information for your Google Business Profile and social media platforms. Then, link to these sites wherever you can to drive traffic and generate leads.
  3. Use reviews. About 76% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, so ask for customer reviews to drive some organic traffic to your website. Plus, if you respond to reviews, it’ll show your willingness to respond to customers’ requests, which will drive more traffic your way.

👉 Find more SEO tips.


This week's highlight reel

  • The real TLDR. Last Thursday, a US bipartisan group proposed a new bill called the TLDR Act. It requires tech companies to give a simplified summary of their terms of service so that customers actually know what they’re agreeing to.
  • The 10-year-old millionaire. YouTube sensation Ryan Kaji earned his family an estimated $25M+ per year with his toy review videos. The key to his success? Having Ryan (the ideal toy customer) be the star of the show, unlike most branded toy videos.
  • Hybrid is hot. Envoy, a company that makes it easier for businesses to run hybrid workplaces, raised $111M in Series C last week. This is yet another sign that returning to the office will be far from what it used to be.
  • Netflix and bill. The streaming giant raised prices for US and Canadian customers by about $1.50 a month – despite facing a ton of competition from other services. This small hike could lead to a $1.35B increase in annual revenue for Netflix.
  • Locket just topped it. There’s a new #1 in the App Store: meet Locket. An app where people can share pictures to their friends’ phone homescreens. How did it go viral? TikTok (so Locket didn’t even have to pay anyone to promote it).

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