exodus

by Kevin Eikenberry

Someday, the pandemic will end.  Not everyone will declare it at the same time, or view it in exactly the same way, but that day is coming.  

Is your organization ready for it?

According to the Pulse of the American Worker Survey from Prudential, 26% of respondents  plan to look for a new job “when the threat of the pandemic decreases.”

Take a look at the faces on your next Zoom call.  How would your team or organization be affected if a quarter of those people left?

A False Sense of Security

Often during a recession, organizations are lulled into a false sense of security when retention is high, only to be jolted by the shock of an exodus of talent when the economy improves and job opportunities surface.  People weren’t satisfied, or even content, just wanting an opportunity!  When opportunities presented themselves, they were ready for something new and better.

According to the Prudential survey, the same thing is about to happen post-pandemic, and I agree with that assessment. Not every organization (or team) will be impacted, and it might not be too late to hold on to your best talent (and let’s be clear, the people who leave won’t necessarily be your lower performers).

What can you do?

Focus on Your Organizational Culture

If your culture isn’t strong or has frayed at the edges during the pandemic, that is a major reason people are looking to leave when given a chance.  Do people feel trusted?  Are they engaged in decision making (including what the future of work will be in your organization)? Do they see chances for advancement, promotion, and development in your organization? Are you investing in your team members? 

These are just a few of the questions worth asking.  If you haven’t been asking them it might not be too late.  You can ask them as an organization or at the team level.  If you are a front line or mid-level manager, don’t lament this fact and forward this article to your boss, hoping they will “do something.”  Rather, roll up your sleeves and go to work on your team’s culture.  When people see real effort and action to address cultural changes, they can become hopeful and less likely to be logging into LinkedIn or Indeed looking for their next opportunity.

Take our Future of Work Survey and see how well your organization is prepared for what’s coming.

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