Investigating the Causes of Swim Instructor Turnover in the Aquatics Industry


  • Michael Butson Monash University
  • Eric Du Learn to Swim Victoria
  • Ruth Jeanes Monash University
  • John Tower Victoria University



Employees are said to be the backbone of any organisation. Employee turnover is the rate at which individuals leave an organisation. High employee turnover can be disruptive and costly for management, employees, and customers. The aquatics industry is experiencing increased voluntary and dysfunctional swim instructor turnover. The perspective of former swim instructors helped to understand the reasons for turnover. This study used semi-structured interviews with nineteen (58% male, 42% female) former swim teachers to identify their reasons for leaving the position. The inductive analysis determined that swim instructors left their position for four reasons: a negative view of management, failing to understand the working environment, limited career progression, and swim instructing being a temporary role. Consequently, managers need to consider appropriate retention strategies to retain future and existing swim instructors (e.g., a realistic job preview, training and personal development, and exit interviews).





Research Paper