In the Trenches: Planning for Turnover
Earlier this year, my de facto #2 guy decided it was time to move on to start his own (unrelated) business. Now someone else is leaving, but the situation couldn’t have been more different. This time, I’m completely prepared.
I’ve known that this concierge would be leaving from almost the day she started. She’s been working hard during grad school, but she’s moving on to a full time job in June. She’ll still hang out to help as a concierge from time to time, but the reality is she won’t have much time to chip in so her role will be greatly reduced. She’s done a great job, and I’ll miss having her, but I couldn’t have asked for an easier transition.
The transition process has improved significantly. I’ve been slowly looking for new concierges to come in and fill the void. One is just about finished with training and will be ready to go by June 1. I’m also talking to a couple other potential concierges to hopefully be up and running soon after. This is an ideal transition, but I know it won’t always be this easy. Still, it will continue to get easier.
Since my previous #2 guy left, I have learned to be far more prepared. I’ve been building a list of interested concierges who have passed the first couple rounds of interviews. So now, if there’s a sudden opening, I’ll be in a better position to get someone new up and running.
I’ve also done a fair amount of work on our training document; really beefing it up to provide more information to newcomers. In addition, I’ve better-defined roles to make sure that the job is not as nebulous as it was originally. The end result is that things are running much better than before when it comes to replacing a departed concierge. Turnover sucks, but at least now it’s easier to combat than it was just a couple months ago.
Brett Snyder is President and Chief Airline Dork of Cranky Concierge air travel assistance. Snyder previously worked for several airlines, including America West and United, before leaving to create a travel search site for PriceGrabber.com. Snyder did his undergrad at George Washington and earned his MBA from Stanford.