Much has been spoken and written about the great resignation wave. I’ve even participated in a PRINZ webinar on exactly this topic. And as a business manager, it is confronting to watch as staff leave after the relative stability of the past two years.
Because, ironically, not many staff left during the height of the Covid pandemic, 2020 and 2021. Unless you were sadly ‘disestablished’, most people stayed, partly because they felt supported by their workplace and managers, and partly because it was all too damn disruptive without adding the stress of a new job.
Now, 2022 has arrived and the great resignation is upon us. The reasons are easily understood – open borders, a desire for something different, the temptation of lots more money – but I think it is more than that. Covid taught us the value of life. All those years struggling for work/life balance was suddenly put into sharp relief by a nasty pandemic that sent us all home and made is re-evaluate what really mattered to us.
The great resignation is more driven by the great reset of what you want from life than just a desire to fly the nest and experience the world.
This is why most companies are now in the middle of re-evaluating how they engage with their staff and what truly matters to them.
Given that the great resignation/reset has cooincided with a serious talent shortage (how did this happen??), it is worth looking at what will help you both attract and retain talent. This was the primary topic of the PRINZ webinar, presented by Communicators’ Lynley Lischner and myself. In developing my presentation, I also spoke to two other recruiters Mango works with, Louise Paulin of BrightSpark and Caroline Lynch of Metro Recruitment. Thanks to both of you for great insights.
We all know it is cheaper to keep people than to recruit new ones. But before you are forced to throw huge sums of money at them to convince them to stay (a practice I have always disliked as it shows up your lack of forethought and appreciation), here are some practices that might help them stay.
Rewards & Recognition
Word of mouth is one of our most powerful communication tools. If your staff are happy, they’ll talk about it. And this will help with attracting talent.
Two final thoughts – flexible/hybrid working is here to stay – embrace it as a manager, but remember that flexibility runs both ways.
And communicate more than you ever thought necessary. Take your team on your journey. They will reward you with loyalty. They may not always stay as long as you want, but they will have good things to say about you and your company in the future. Reputation is everything. Now is a good time to enhance it.