Disclaimer: I (Jessica) opted to post this without extra nuance as opposed to not sharing. Hopefully, it can still help spark some discussion and consideration but there are many additional considerations here.
Ben West made this rough Squiggle model you can use to calculate an organization's costs of replacing an employee in months of productivity and rough monetary value.
The model is pretty simple: total_cost = hiring_manager_time + hiring_support_time + time_without_employee + skill_up_time
I wanted this to be shared because when Ben mentioned some of the extra costs of an employee leaving an org, I was surprised by how high it was. I think others might be underweighting this cost as well which could influence some career decisions.
One highlighted point from the model I wasn’t seriously considering:
A new employee will generally take some amount of time to become as efficient as
the previous employee.
This comes from several sources:
- New people will often simply lack relevant skills/knowledge
- The coworkers of new staff will take a while to understand how to efficiently work with the new person, build up trust with them, understand their strengths and weaknesses, etc.
- New people will also almost certainly lack role-specific knowledge, e.g. "to send the newsletter you have to use this website and then get approval from this person except in these scenarios you actually get approval from different person" etc.
Hope this is useful!
To be clear, I definitely think there are times when people can have a lot more impact elsewhere and there are many biases that act in favor of staying in a job for too long. However, I feel like people in EA hop around particularly fast and sometimes face some social incentives to leave their current positions.