UK managers quitting over stress and lack of training rather than pay

Nearly three quarters (72%) of UK managers who have recently quit their job said adequate training and support could have persuaded them to stay.

UK employees are significantly more likely to quit over stress and a lack of fulfilment than they are to quit over pay, a survey by learning platform 360Learning has shown.

The problem was especially severe among managers.

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Nearly half (44%) of the managers polled who had quit their jobs or were planning to to do so said they had never received adequate training during their time at the company.

Nick Hernandez, 360Learning CEO and founder, told HR magazine: “With this lack of support for such a critical group of employees, it’s no wonder organisations everywhere are struggling to attract and retain talented people.

“Add this departure of managerial staff to the high rates of resignation for experienced subject-matter experts, and the drain of institutional knowledge becomes a real and urgent threat for businesses of all kinds.”

Norma Gillespie, CEO of recruitment outsourcing company Resource Solutions, added that managers are critical to employee retention during the Great Resignation.

Speaking to HR magazine, she said: “One thing hasn’t changed, and that is that people leave poor managers, not organisations.

“While this recruitment struggle is set to continue, businesses need to focus hard on retaining talent and future-proofing their current workforce.”

When asked what they would have liked, respondents suggested opportunities to develop their managerial skills, in-role upskilling, and courses on how to grow with the company or adapt to changing work environments.

Equipping managers to support hybrid working and more flexible working styles, like the four-day week, are also more important than ever, said Hernandez.

He added: “They need the right tools and resources to adjust to this new normal, and to help their teams thrive despite the uncertainties of pandemic life. If businesses can’t support their managers with this specialist training, they risk losing more of the very people they need the most.”

Communication is a critical part of the solution, said Gillespie: “Effective communication in an uncertain world, from both senior leaders and particularly from immediate management can hugely impact someone's feeling of value and self-worth. 

“Businesses need to keep managers, especially at that middle layer, informed and inspired about what is happening in the business, giving them the tools to provide clarity to their people.”