How to Stop People from Quitting Work
World Teacher's Message 254


The Question:

I work at a manufacturing company in Aichi prefecture, Japan. I heard that companies we deal with are facing the problem of new employees quitting their company. How can we stop people from quitting work?

Lecture given 4 September 2011 at Happy Science Tokyo Shoshinkan


Master Okawa’s Answer:


Ryuho Okawa is the founder and CEO of Happy Science. He was born on July 7, 1956. After graduating from University of Tokyo in the faculty of law, he joined a Tokyo-based trading house. While working at its New York headquarters, he studied international finance at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.

On March 23rd, 1981, he achieved Great Enlightenment, and awakened to the hidden part of his consciousness, El Cantare, whose mission is to bring happiness to all humanity. In October 1986, he established Happy Science. Okawa has published over 2,300 books, including The Laws of the Sun and the Declaration of Happiness Realization Party. He has given over 2,700 lectures worldwide. He has also produced 12 feature-length films based on his works. He also established the Happy Realization Party, Happy Science Academy, and the Happy Science University.

I’m aware that there are many sub-contractor factories in Aichi prefecture. When larger factories and companies make big profits, often a large part of the burden falls on the sub-contractors.

The tougher they are on the sub-contractors, the more profit there is for the bigger companies and the larger the deficits for the smaller sub-contractors. There are many cases where sub-contractors try all sorts of things to stay afloat, such as providing better services, but to no avail. Many are on the brink of collapse, and many others actually do collapse.

There are two reasons why young people don’t stay working. One is that they see only a bleak future with poor employee treatment and unstable income. This is probably the more popular reason.

The other reason is related to cases where people quit companies that have an unusually fast growth rate. This is quite a frequent situation. When companies experience rapid growth, the kind of personnel needed changes very quickly.

It would be different if the change was slow, but because the change is so fast many people start to fall behind, and the company needs to employ more experienced workers. When they employ new people who fit those needs, the existing workers sometimes give up and leave.

Some business consultants even say “the greater the number of workers quitting, the greater the growth”.

So there are two reasons. I don’t know which of these applies to your question, but in general people who are employed later are more able, so they are often put in important positions. The other workers who have been in the company a longer time do not welcome these turns of events.

Many people quit feeling disappointed that they used to be useful but now they aren’t.


Turning The Company Into A School Of Life

If you have a strong desire to stop people from quitting, you must change the company from being a simple manufacturing, sales and services organization into a ‘school of life’. This requires a different sort of bond.

Companies manufacture or sell goods to earn a living, and each worker’s workflow might be simple and his or her abilities limited. But you can create another side to it: a place to learn about life.

You can put in effort to create a school of life where the workers can study the workings of their mind. It can be done at meetings, or at other opportunities for spiritual self-improvement. If you succeed in creating an inner bond that binds the workers together, the people you really want to stay will stay.

Meanwhile, you can think about improving aspects in the company that made people want to leave in the first place. If the workers who are quitting didn’t have the necessary abilities, you may need to create jobs that they can still do.


Being Young Is A Good Reason for Being Chosen

Most people quit because they are dissatisfied, so you can look at what they are dissatisfied about and choose accordingly and put people in positions of responsibility. What you must watch out for, however, is the Japanese management tradition of not choosing younger workers for positions of responsibility. This idea is wrong.

Being young is not a reason for suppressing people; being young is a good reason for choosing people for positions of higher responsibility. There is no use in choosing older people over younger ones. Older people have less growth potential as opposed to younger people, who would go “all out” when they are given a chance.

Of course, there will be failures. If you put younger people in responsible positions, 60-70% of attempts will fail. But still, you must persevere for the 30-40% of successes.

And just like youth is not a good reason for suppressing people, using women only as low-cost workers is also unappealing.


Investing in Female Workers

Able men will not stay in companies where women are only given low treatment. You must have an open mind toward female workers too.

Having a childbearing body is unrelated to abilities at work. The reason why Japanese companies have long discriminated against women is because maternity leave generates a loss. They say that they get no returns for the cost of training female workers. But if the female workers have the potential for returning the costs and generating profit on top, it is well worth the investment to train them.

If the company grows and achieves a greater margin, you can introduce additional benefits to make child-raising easier. That way the company will become even bigger.

I spoke about the two reasons why people quit work and making the company into a ‘school of life’ to establish a sort of inner bond between the workers as a method of keeping workers from quitting.

How to Stop People from Quitting Work
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