I'm in a unique position as a Recruitment Professional, in that I spend a lot of time talking to people who are leaving their employer - go figure, right!
Now - note that I don't say leaving their job, because generally that's not the case; evident by the number of people who leave a role, only to move on to a very similar role within a similar business.
Why? Because you've lost them. They don't believe in you anymore. There has been a disconnect. And all too often I hear these same reasons:
Making strategic or directional changes and not involving key people
You wouldn't have hired the people you chose for their clairvoyance abilities, and expecting them to blindly follow you insults their intelligence. Chances are they are brimming full of ideas and market feedback that you can benefit from. Good Leaders communicate regularly and well. And Great Leaders involve their staff in strategic conversations in order to fine-tune the directives and earn buy in.
Including your staff in higher level discussions elevates their thinking and engages them.
Engaged staff are happy staff.
Refusing to value your employees' time
Pretty simple. Lead by example. Don't turn up late to meetings, or not show at all. Don't ask someone to stay late without giving them a chance to plan this with their family. Don't offer to spend time with someone and take calls, look at your watch, or cut it short because "there's something else I've got to rush off to". We're all guilty of it because we're busy, right? Well I'd say it's better to value your employees' time than to get busy hiring. I recall years ago having a job interview with a man named Clinton Jones, at the time National Sales Manager. Clinton had a plaque on his desk that read "Be Here Now". For him, that was a reminder that time spent with your people is the best time you can spend.
So be present and take the time to talk through their issues.
Not Walking The Walk
I don't think anyone develops and keeps respect for a leader who doesn't practice what they preach. Examples being - asking people to do things you won't, hypocritical statements, asking for excellence and only delivering averageness, or expecting your team to work their posteriors off while you waltz out of the office at 3pm with your golf clubs over your shoulder.
Get in the trenches with your people, share your knowledge and show them how good you are!
OK, some pretty basic lessons, I do admit. But this is the feedback I am getting all too often and as Managers we do spend a lot of time focused on the bigger picture issues and sometimes forget the small stuff. By eliminating these negatives you could save yourself some time and money and grow your leadership status - something you have no doubt, worked very hard to earn.