What's the worst staff turnover you've seen at a firm?

williamthesnake's picture
Rank: King Kong | 1,000

So what is the worst staff turnover that you've seen at a company? And what were the causes behind it? Let's exclude part time fast food jobs, just financial services firms.

I was at a small IB boutique where annual staff turnover was c70%. There were a few management roles that were pretty stable over the years, but all other staff from analyst to MD came in and out as if via a revolving door. A few were fired but the overwhelming majority left because of the CEO's attitude/personality.

Comments (31)

Mar 25, 2019

I've seen one LMM PE/VC firm in particular that's churned through some really smart people. The CEO is brilliant but I'm pretty sure he is aspy.

Mar 25, 2019

My friend had a client who owned a specific McDonalds which retained a staff of 50 full and part time employees. At the end of the year, they had to issue nearly 3,500 W2s.

Mar 27, 2019

jeeeeezzzz

Mar 27, 2019

The even sadder part is he tried to combat the turnover by saying something like, "You'll get $9/hr as a starting wage. After 1 month, I'll bump it to $10.50. After 3 months, I'll bump it to $13. After a year, I'll bump it to $15." This was a numberyears ago, but nearly $30k a year to slang burgers!? My first job in bank ops paid a whoppin $14/hr and required a college degree.

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Mar 27, 2019

Doesn't pass the smell test - that's a 70x turnover or 5.2 days per employee. McDs averages 150% turnover, so normal would be 75 new employees or 125 in total. You're saying his store was 28x the average??

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Mar 27, 2019

Something like that. Then again it is what I was told. It was astounding to hear the details, but stranger things have happened.

Mar 27, 2019

The brokerage group I started with and hated has had approximately 50% of the people leave for a competitor, including one of the founding principals. Serves them right.

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Mar 28, 2019

Real estate brokerage attracts some of the biggest sociopaths around (outside of Wall Street) and they tend to excel in the industry.

Mar 27, 2019

Piggy backing on @CRE, the IS team I was a part of saw 100% turn over of junior staff (sub director level) over two years. This may be viewed as a positive however. All of us left to REPE/REITS. There is now one mid-level guy handling alllll of that bs. Feel for him, but sure he is making bank as the lone support wolf.

Still, must've been painful for senior folks.

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Mar 28, 2019

I'm guessing these boomer partners running the IS show must have been treated like dogs when they came up in the business. Hopefully the culture is changing for young people. An adversarial relationship between brokers and support staff is incredibly counter productive as the importance of solid analysis/packaging continues to rise.

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Mar 28, 2019

Honestly the culture wasn't bad. The hours were crazy and the extracurricular activities, ie; lunches, dinners, travel, boondoggles, etc... really took their toll after awhile. That's what it takes to be and continue to be a market leading IS team. Some have, some don't. I did not.

The managing broker was a friggin' stud. Easily one of the best presenters/pitchers I have ever encountered. He was definitely on the spectrum though to some degree. Because he was so good we worked on some extremely high profile deals which is a blessing and a curse. if you're a principal looking for a junior guy do you want to do a stupid interview process or connect directly with a guy that is a certified stud that assisted in a complex/high profile deal?

For avoidance of doubt, I'm not saying I'm a stud. I'm rather pedestrian, but right place right time.

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Funniest
Mar 27, 2019

My first job was in consulting for a boutique shop. Immediately after I started we were bought out by a large firm, who let's just say completely ruined the company culture. To give you an idea of how bad the culture shock was, we used to have fancy open bar town halls with steak dinners and the last one I was there for had pizza and soda in a conference room. Expense accounts were done away with. Within two years, the 130 folks that were there when I started dwindled to less than 30 at which point I was also gone. Believe the group completely dissolved. with a year after that. SYNERGIES THOUGH!!

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Mar 27, 2019

deleted

Mar 28, 2019

This is quite a bizarre thing for the buyer to do. Unless the buyer manages to somehow take over the client relationships of the takeover target, that seems like an utter waste if all your fee earning assets (the people) just leave. Though I imagine the owners of that boutique made a nice killing off that sale.

Mar 28, 2019

It's pretty typical. Culture/integration is a huge fail point for m&a and why most services firms go for low multiples.

Most Helpful
Mar 28, 2019

My first job in real estate debt/equity brokerage. About half of all staff under MD's resigned within a 3-4 month time period. Worst work culture I have ever seen - terrible sweatshop with ridiculous pay for analysts. They continue to burn out analysts every year or so building their alumni network of shared misery.

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Mar 28, 2019

Worked at a sweatshop tech company with a $2Bn market cap that takes young grads and has them smile and dial.

Out of the 60 person class, 3 years later only two remained with the company and were in different divisions than when they started.

Mar 31, 2019

Oh this is yelp isn't it?

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Apr 1, 2019

Lolol

Mar 28, 2019

First job major company tied to certain Western Hemisphere as a C-Suite and major executives, gets bought by a major European company to avoid the SEC and GAAP. The US was probably the least effected and people were quitting in groves because no one knew what was going on anymore.

Mar 28, 2019

Sounds like AGC Partners

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Mar 28, 2019

Didn't Sage Kelly poach like dozens of directors from Jefferies to come work at Cantor? Like to the point where Jefferies wants to sue them?

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Mar 28, 2019

Any sales/commission job like Northwestern Mutual. Learning curve is flat as heck and very few are willing to be told to buzz off 8 hours a day.

Mar 28, 2019

A long time ago in Fortune 500 sales division far far away, there was an internal corporate efficiency group tasked with analyzing new college hire attrition rates within our sales group. As a new hire myself, I was one of the lucky survivors they put under the microscope to assess what my genetic makeup was and if they could clone me.

Long story short, I got close with someone on the team who divulged to me that attrition rates were along the lines of 65-70% after the first year.

The root cause (in my opinion), HR overpromised and the job underdelivered.

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Mar 28, 2019

Once upon a time, IBM had an internal strategy consulting group that would consult on basically all decisions. They were huge, but still had a cost rate, aka IBM had to pay their own consultants. After a decade of this operating model, Bain came in and told IBM to rethink their operating model. IBM fired like 2,500 - 5,000 people like that.

Mar 30, 2019

Small hedge fund in London. Decent pay, but terrible culture. Very abrasive work environment with extremely long hours: burnt analysts out through a combination of abuse and exhaustion. Approximately 80% of analysts would last no longer than 2-3mos, with it not uncommon for people to quit in a matter of days.

Mar 31, 2019
Frodo's Banging:

Once upon a time, IBM had an internal strategy consulting group that would consult on basically all decisions. They were huge, but still had a cost rate, aka IBM had to pay their own consultants. After a decade of this operating model, Bain came in and told IBM to rethink their operating model. IBM fired like 2,500 - 5,000 people like that.

Not a Bain consultant but that seems like a conflict of interest.

Apr 2, 2019

If Bain can do it better and faster then it's the right thing to do for the shareholders. Hard to explain if you're on that project that your client should fire their own internal team and hire you instead though, but looks like they pulled it off

Mar 31, 2019
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