Why Do Startup Employees in Germany Quit Jobs So Often?

Published 14 Feb 2020

According to LinkedIn, the average employee tenure in startups in Berlin and some other major cities in Germany is around 10 months. This is certainly driven by the fact that not all companies survive even after getting their first funding, but there is still a number of reasons why experienced and hardworking professionals leave their startup jobs.

Job Specific & Career Related Reasons

Most people join the company looking for experiences, opportunities and challenges. If the new job does not fulfill their needs or the management style is not matching expectations, employees seriously consider moving on. Among those reasons, one can find lack of recognition, micromanagement and poor leadership.

Lack of security is another important topic since startups is a generally a turbulent environment. Many founders don't bother firing employees shortly before the end of trial period which is usually 6 months in Germany.

Stress at Work

The above reasons and pressure at work have their immediate consequences.

61% of employees claim their job is the reason of health issues.

Half of those people never speak to their employers about this - they just start looking for a new job, which is sometimes not even better than the previous one.

Nowadays people take stress at work for granted so they don't even bother to combat it. In the meantime, there's a little number of startups where mental health coaching or meditation are offered as stress prevention measure. As a result, companies lose billions because of employees' productivity loss.

Health Issues

Working under pressure and in stressful environment increases the chance of getting sick.

Startup jobs are demanding which means that you sometimes have to work even when you are sick. As a result, people get burnout or substantial damage to health which is not motivating them to stay with their company any longer. They either take time off or look for a job which, according to their perception, is less stressful.

Personal Issues

People have their private lives outside of work hours. However, sometimes those issues cannot wait till the end of the business day. Some need to pick up their kid earlier, others cannot focus on work because they have troubles with their partner or a family member is not well.

One of the ways to address personal issues is to hire a so called Feel Good Manager to take care of employees' private issues. Nevertheless, most companies do not offer any kind of help, not even talking about professional services like mental health coaching or psychotherapy. Some corporations offer babysitting services for working parents but startups usually don't.

Lack of employer's support with private issues makes older and more experienced employees stay in traditional companies rather than startups.

As a CEO or HR Manager, you cannot always properly address personal issues or make employees recharge quickly. Still, having the strategy to improve employee wellbeing in place is a big step towards a healthy workplace.

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