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Lead Buzz 12/05 Conducting exit interviews, tracking work time and more

By Chris Penttila

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

It's an employee's last day on the job, and that meansan exit interview. Beware: You may be going about it all wrong.It's time to look at the exit interview in a whole newlight.

"The old-school [thinking says] you want to figure out whypeople are leaving and change that pattern," says RichardHarding, director of research for Kenexa, a Wayne, Pennsylvania,employee research and employment process outsourcing firm."The new philosophy around exit interviews is to turn thataround and figure out why productive people stay."

One emerging technique born out of that theory is to expandexit-interview techniques to the existing work force. Ask the samequestions, but change the verb tense from past to present.Comparing ex-employees and current employees lets you create a"retention index"--points of overlap between groups wherethe company can improve its management skills.

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