What to Do When a Key Employee Leaves Your Multifamily Community
- May 14, 2015
Harry Shearer, the voice actor for many key characters on The Simpsons, including Mr. Burns, Principal Skinner and Ned Flanders, is allegedly leaving the long-running cartoon. (Until he realizes how much money he is walking away from and then comes back, but as of this blog post, it looks like he’s leaving.)
Cue a million groan-inducing Simpsons-related puns about the departure.
Wait, wait! I have some, too. How about these:
- Worst. Decision. Ever.
- Certainly not ‘excellent.’
- Harry Shearer is leaving? D’oh!
- My disappointment goes up to 11! (OK, that one is a This is Spinal Tap reference, but Spinal Tap actually makes an appearance on the episode of The Simpsons when Otto—another Shearer character, by the way—moves in with the family, so it counts, and I need to get out more.)
OK, awesome, now that’s out of my system. Anyway, apparently The Simpsons recently signed a contract for two more seasons, at least. So, as they say, the show must go on. Literally, so I’m sure the producers will replace him.
But, this just goes to highlight that employees leave. Even your best ones. People retire, other opportunities present themselves, people might move, life happens.
Are you prepared in case a key employee at your multifamily community leaves? Here are some suggestions of what to do if and when you lose a valuable team member.
Know the job description. No matter how much we’ll miss a person, the work still needs to be done. To quote The Simpsons, “You can take this job…and fill it.” Make sure you have an idea of what the employee did so you can work on figuring out the gaps that need to be covered.
Work out a plan. Along the same lines, figure out what you want to do. Do you want to hire a replacement? Should you just split up the duties among the employees still there? Could you just phase out the position entirely? Before you go charging forward, think about what you need for the community. Maybe this is an opportunity to go in another direction or focus on other areas.
Do an exit interview. Find out what the employee loved about the job, and what he or she didn’t like. Get tips on what could be improved. This is all valuable insider information that your current employees probably wouldn’t tell you, especially if it’s negative.
Keep your residents in mind. It might be a little bit chaotic when an employee leaves, but your residents don’t care about that. They want everything running smoothly, because, after all, they live there. So if it’s a doorman that leaves, make sure there is someone else there who can let people in and accept packages. If it’s someone from maintenance, you might need to hire contract employees to cover the workload until you can find a permanent replacement. You want to make sure the quality of service does not decline, even in times of transition.
Be the first one to go through their desk. That way you have first dibs on whatever the employee has left behind. Colored Hi-Liters, the good stapler, a rubber band ball—these things are often left behind and they are all up for grabs.
What are some other important things to do when a key employee leaves your multifamily community leaves? What are your thoughts on Harry Shearer leaving The Simpsons?
-Jessica Fiur, Senior Editor