The last 18 months changed the game for employers and employees. The Great Resignation is a direct result of the workforce flexing its muscles. Attitudes toward work and where it fits in the lives of your teams is changing. If you do not respond in a way that seems like you are truly trying to find ways to meet your employees closer to where they are, then you may find yourself on the wrong end of the changes and shifts we are watching right before our eyes.
I was prepping for an event that I am speaking at next month. The audience will be mostly C-Suite Leaders. One of the moderators asked me what I thought one of the really deep changes we saw during the height of the pandemic was that wasn’t really getting enough oxygen. I stopped and thought about that for a min and it occurred to me that the workforce was asking for things beyond the ability to work remotely but that they might not recognize it nor would it be at our doorstep the way it is now, without all that went into 2020.
For the first time that I am aware of, Full Time employees are asking for things that, historically, have been available only to Freelance/Gig Worker and Freelance/Gig Worker are asking for considerations that, pre-COVID, were only available to FTEs. (Think: Flexible Schedules i.e. not 9 to 5 and Unemployment Insurance)
This got me thinking about how Leaders could begin to re-envision the modern workplace and I came up with this list of 5 things as a jumping off point in the discussion.
Here are "5 Things' your company can do to be competitive in the Talent Game:
1) Understand that it is not a Buyers Market - Employees and Candidates have more leverage than ever before. Stop assuming it will ever return to "how it was" It won't. Adjust, Adapt, Evolve.
2) Remote/ HybridWork is here to stay: Embrace it and focus on creating a culture that transcends office locations and provides and encourages opportunities to connect outside of the office either virtually or maybe in common 3rd Spaces.
3) Reimagine Benefits - Not all benefits are equal. Health Insurance is valuable but the Post 2020 Worker is looking for Flexibility and a balanced life. Understand Unlimited PTO does not equal balance. Try looking at Voluntary Benefits like Elder Care, Back Up Child Care or even Pet Insurance. Provide the Flexibility that people crave and consider Flex Schedules, 4 Day Work weeks or "Work from Anywhere" programs
4) Rethink Compensation - Base it on the value of the skill in the Marketplace, not where the person sits. Geographical Considerations became obsolete when COVID arrived.
5) Be Socially Responsible - The workforce sees the injustices of the world. They see challenges of Pandemic and Social Inequality as something that directly impacts them. If you do not recognize it and take a stand for what is right and fair....They will see that too!