The non-compete employment agreement has been a long used tool for employers to protect their business interests and to deter their talent from leaving the company for a variety of reasons. With each passing year new talent is coming into the marketplace, tenured talent is leaving the marketplace, and some established business practices, such as employment agreements, are fading with the times. It may be time to review the execution of the non-compete agreement as it may be causing you more headaches than it is worth. To put it bluntly, non-compete agreements cost you both talent and employee performance in both the short term and the long term.
According to a longitudinal study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average worker holds an average of 11 different jobs before the age of 48. It is no longer the norm to stay with a company for 30 years, get your gold watch and pension at retirement and ride off into the sunset. With that in mind, when you are attracting talent to your organization, putting a non-compete agreement in front of them before they join you can have a deterring effect and you may miss out on them all together.
If you have employees that are currently under non-compete agreements, you may not be getting full production out of said employees. If someone is unhappy in their current role, but cannot leave due to a contractual obligation, they may become a disengaged or even unengaged employee and decline in their performance. They may seek other employment to remedy their situation, but often times employers will not look to hire someone with a non-compete agreement unless the employee asks their current employer for release. This puts the employee in a potential lose-lose scenario and will likely cause them to stay in their current role in a perpetual state of discontent.
Have you personally had a negative experience enforcing non-compete agreements or issues with hiring talent that is currently under said agreement?
Feel free to share your feedback and experiences.