According to Harvard Business Review writer, Ian Cook, there has been a global tidal wave of over 67 million resignations in the US, across US industries, which has continued from 2020 into 2022.
Those who tend to resign are experienced, mid-level professionals, with training, up-to-date skill sets or younger workers chomping at the bit for more development and experience. Many have been working from home since the pandemic which has provided greater time and freedom to explore options. The pandemic also presented uneasiness and intensified workloads for them, factors that exacerbated their impulse to leave their jobs. The health care industry, for example, saw a 3.6% hike in resignations; the tech field saw a 4.5% rise. Other fields drastically impacted have been hospitality, travel, tourism, service industries and transportation.
As a result, unprecedented dissatisfaction has blighted industries on all levels. The antidote, according to the press, is what is called The Great Retention. Companies must become more proactive to engage and reach out to their workforce with ongoing conversation and involve them in everyday running of the enterprise. What has contributed to this need? Low wages, meager overtime policies, schedule inflexibility, personality conflicts, bland or negative company culture, bullying executives, limited opportunities for promotion, lack of adequate training, lack of environmental, health and safety precautions, lack of contact with remote supervisors.
How to combat this problem? Here are some ideas to begin:
- To create the sense of belonging, ask employees what would make them feel more engaged and aligned with the organization. Follow up and implement some of their ideas.
- Embed community projects into the company mission so that employees readily see that you are taking action to ensure their well-being and that of your community.
- Launch creative department lunches during which the group can work out a glitch or streamline a process.
- Host a Zoom meeting for professional development where everyone participates and gains new skills.
- Reach out to the local Chamber of Commerce to engage the community in a social action project.
- Launch an employee sports team or lunchtime walking group.
With this beginning, continue the conversation and carry out your own ideas and those of your employees. You’ll both be glad you did.