We all have heard and are aware of the ‘Great Resignation’. Employees are switching jobs at record numbers. Workforces are also shrinking. In today’s scenario labor market, regardless of business type or location, is faced with more job openings than available workers. It is becoming tough for businesses to retain employees as there are more job openings than available workers. These market pressures are creating never-before-seen urgency around talent. And one tool most of the businesses are using- ‘money’. It seems like every business has used money to entice key employees to stay and to lure employees to their organization, such as increasing starting wages. And once you change that, there’s no going back. Unfortunately, the money bucket is not bottomless. It’s the definition of a finite resource, creating a reactionary cycle in the market that can only go on for so long.
The point here to understand is at some point in time, the availability of money as a solution will reach a tipping point. In my view, every challenge can be converted into opportunity. Here are a few things that can help your business to turn the Great Resignation into a Great Retention moment.
Firstly, ensure pay equity. Many employers want to be believe that employees do not discuss their salary, but they do. This is the hard-core reality. There is a considerable risk of turnover when one employee is earning substantially more than another employee for the same work. If you’re paying more for incoming talent, then ensure the existing talent too, are being paid in a way that is commensurate with their expertise and tenure with the company.
Secondly, increase workplace flexibility. We all know the hybrid model of working is here to stay. For workers not required to be onsite, allowing work-from-anywhere is the go-to for increased workplace flexibility. Some unusual approaches that organizations have tried including reducing vacation and moving to 10 or even 12-hour shifts, resulting in more days off.
Thirdly, create a high-attention culture. Using money to temper resignations is short-term table stakes. The most powerful, and most efficient longer-term approach to being proactive about talent is to invest in frequent attention. We humans have an unquenchable need for attention. We all want to be seen, heard, and valued for our own unique selves and unique contributions. That natural desire for attention, combined with the ever-increasing speed of work, means that attention from our most important people at work, our managers, ideally happens at least weekly.
The practice of attention doesn’t need to be complicated and over-structured. In fact, it can be as simple as a 3– to 5-minute check-in that sounds like, “What are your priorities this week and how can I help?” That’s it. Simple, light-touch attention. Data from real companies show over and over that employee who receive weekly, light-touch attention from their managers are three times more likely to be all-in at work.
So why wait -Start with embedding the practice of check-ins into your organization. Check-ins aren’t the only thing, but they are the fastest thing when it comes to creating a culture where people feel connected and less compelled to leave. At Least it is a better option than shelling huge amounts on increasing the starting wages.