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How to deal with an unexpected staff departure

We at Lombard Accountants understand that your small business may sometimes have to deal with the fact that a valued staff member may unexpectedly move on to a new opportunity. It is only natural to feel sad and disheartened when a staff member leaves you, especially if it was unexpected. However, to prevent any further complications, the immediate aftermath of this event requires some practical measures. Follow these steps to prepare for an unexpected staff member leaving your company.

First of all, determine the reason for their departure. Did they reveal any signs that would have made it easier for you to prevent them from leaving? This will help you understand more about the sudden exit and prevent others from experiencing the same fate in future. Have a discussion with the departing staff members and find out what went wrong in your business or workplace that made them leave suddenly and unexpectedly.

Second, take a step back and take stock of all the good things that happened in your business due to having a staff member for a long period. Even if you had some disagreements with them or were dissatisfied with some of their activities, highlight the positive inputs you received from them. They are human and they will feel bad when they leave. To ease their feeling of guilt, highlight the contributions you received from them and remind them how happy everyone is to have them as part of the workforce.

Lastly, make sure that all necessary procedures have been followed. This must be documented in writing and signed off by you as the company owner. Any financial benefits agreed upon should be paid on time and in full. Do not leave any loose ends as this can cause you to lose respect among your employees. At the same time, you should avoid any acts of revenge that are usually associated with an unexpected staff exit.

In summary, an unexpected staff departure is a situation you should be prepared for in your business. This can help prevent financial losses as well as protect the overall morale in the organisation, ensuring that your team members are still committed to their jobs.

If you would like to discuss your business needs. Call Lombard Accountants on (01) 678 9960 or email

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