Two months ago, I wrote to you about Surviving the Great Resignation. The challenge is, the further we get into this, the more it seems like all we are doing is rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.
Every week, I hear stories from employers about mass exoduses and companies scrambling to fill vacant positions. At the same time, I hear about the employed quitting jobs, without somewhere to land, with the thought process, “there has to be somewhere better than where I currently am.”
I am here to say that the grass is not necessarily greener elsewhere, but merely another shade of green for employers and the employed alike.
Both employers and employees must take a long and hard look at what is currently happening. Employees must understand that the job they take over may be the mess someone else just left. Employers, conversely, need to recognize that if they do not fix the issues that were causing people to leave, then the new hires will do the same in six months . . . or less.
What seems to be a significant issue throughout the system is that expectations and accountability do not mesh. Employees and employers are not communicating or listening to each other, and therefore nothing is changing. The results are frustration, ineffectiveness, and dissatisfaction.
Everyone involved must learn how to communicate effectively, understand what is working, and what is not; what the new goals, aspirations, and challenges should be; and then work together to build something better – instead of pining about how things used to be.
Everyone must acknowledge what was is now the past.
What may have worked in 2019 is not necessarily going to work in 2022 or beyond. Too much has changed. A new frame of reference is required; new goals and new strategies and systems, allowing everyone to move forward more effectively together.
We need to sit down together, realize that things are not perfect, put aside blame and animosity, and ask the question together, “What if?”
That is how we will stop employees from bolting for the door. By showing that we hear the frustrations, challenges, wants, needs, desires, and goals of each other and are willing to work together to create a new normal. One that allows the focus to be where it should be: on the clients you serve together.
Together, we need to redefine what our culture, purpose, goals, and values truly are. Here is a fantastic article by Corporate Rebels on this. We need to move beyond pithy phrases and words that have no real meaning. We must develop cultures based upon action items that can be tangibly measured and assessed, and not just pithy words on a page that have no meaning, and are not lived or acted upon by anyone.
This is not an employee problem nor an employer problem – it is an employee / employer problem to fix together. Each is responsible for where we are today, and each has to be invested in change before change can happen.
Before COVID-19, if you looked at resumes and LinkedIn profiles, job tenure seemed to average four years. That was costing the economy billions of dollars per year. Tenure has gotten shorter, and that will only cost the economy more in terms of lost productivity, hiring, retraining, and getting people up to speed before they leave you again.
This is not good for anyone’s mental well-being, fiscal future, or the ability to maintain and grow customer trust and loyalty.
Now is the time to stop arranging deck chairs on the Titanic.
Now is the time to listen to, understand, and value each other.
Now is the time to communicate effectively, without judgment, and build better organizations full of happier employees.
As I have said in past articles, your brand is only as valuable as your unhappiest employees on their worst days.
What are you doing to assess where you are?
What needs to change?
Are you developing the systems, processes, and communication to make this happen?
Wishing you success.
Connect with Ben HERE to develop and tell your story in ways that those you can influence will listen to, understand your value to them, and be compelled to engage.