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What To Do When Multiple Executives Leave Your Company

Source | FastCompany

There have been shakeups at the top of many major companies lately. Top-level turnover happens, but when it happens at your company, how are you supposed to react? Such sudden changes from leaders tend to make the rest of the company very nervous, and usually, employees are left wondering whether it’s time to head for the exit.

“When a slew of senior executives leave your organization, you should be on a high alert,” says Richard Orbé-Austin, cofounder of Dynamic Transitions Psychological Consulting, LLP in New York City. Senior executives have access to information you don’t, such as the company’s financial status, its standing in the market, the goings-on in board meetings, and so on. “Clearly, some major change is happening—now is the time to act, and not just wait around.”

Still, you don’t necessarily need to panic or act rashly. Take a breath and follow this three-step approach:


Before you jump to conclusions about why leaders are leaving, figure out what is actually happening, recommends Lori Scherwin, founder of Strategize That in New York City. “Clearly transition is in the cards, but it could be attributed to a number of things, not necessarily bad. Sometimes business is underperforming structurally, and sometimes it is simply in need of a management change.”

One way to determine whether to stay or go is to look at what has happened in similar situations in your industry, says Cheryl Palmer, owner of Call to Career in Silver Spring, Maryland. “Based on the information that you have, does it seem likely that the fact that top leaders have been let go will lead to a positive transformation within the company? Or are the problems too systemic for their departure to keep the ship from going under?”


Just because some leaders have bailed doesn’t necessarily mean you should go, too. If your company has been laboring with difficult or ill-aligned executives, an exodus could be a good thing, and you may be better off sticking around to take advantage of the possibilities that are left, says Houston-based career expert Rick Gillis. “If all the ‘bad guys’ left, hang on and try to move yourself up. This may be an opportunity for you, no matter your position.”

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