People move jobs more frequently these days. Here’s what to do when a key team member decides to move on.

As talented employees grow and develop in their careers, it is inevitable that some will decide to branch out and move to another firm.

Be supportive
Congratulate them on their new opportunity. Thank them for their contribution to the firm and mention some of the highlights of their time with your company. You want them to leave on good terms and to remember your firm for the right reasons – that way they will be an ambassador for your business.

Ask questions
Ask them what they are excited about in their new role. This is an ideal opportunity to find out what may not have worked out for them at your firm – so that you can address any potential issues. It can also give you some ideas about what makes other firms more attractive from a career perspective – this could inspire some new thinking around career development at your own firm.

Business as usual
It is important to avoid burning bridges. In our increasingly networked professional circles, there is a good chance that you will cross paths again in the future. While they are working their notice, avoid cancelling meetings, etc. Include them in day to day matters up until the end of their time at your firm – you want them to leave feeling good about your business.

Let them go
There is no point trying to convince an employee to stay. Once they have decided to move on, in their own mind, they have already left. If you encourage them to stay on, they could feel pressured and resent missing out on a good opportunity at their potential new firm. If your business is a genuinely great place to work, they may come back again in the future, with some new ideas gained from their work experiences at other firms.