The year 2021 saw the rise of ‘The great resignation’. Since the pandemic, thousands of people have chosen to leave their jobs for a more flexible work-life balance. This has led to a labour shortage with many organisations struggling to fill vacancies.
People are now looking to work fewer hours and have more flexibility within their roles with the added benefit of being able to work from home.
The rise in resignations is illustrated below from The Conversation. This displays the number of people who quit their job in 2021. The highest proportion of people who had left their current employment have left to seek a new occupation.
A report from CNN Business, it discusses the reason for people leaving their jobs for a variety of reasons including ‘dissatisfaction with their working conditions, uninspiring job roles, and bad bosses’.
“ Failing to treat people in your business with basic human respect will lead to sloppy work for those who want to leave and the added factor of resentment for those who can’t or don’t.” – CEO Andrew Jones
Covid-19 shifted the way people think about their work, bringing a new attitude towards what people want and what they prioritise, which has caught employers off-guard. Parents want to be able to spend more time with their families. The working week has changed, within certain organisations shifting to a four-day week. Some organisations are having to adapt as some traditional working practises no longer suit how people want to work.
Below are some key principles leaders and managers can apply to retain employees:
1. Understand what matters to each team member: Understand the realities of your staff: Childcare, travel costs, prayer times, having suitable equipment. These can go a long way to help individuals live happier better-fulfilled lives.
2. Modern Working Attitude: Stepping out of the traditional working practices and providing a modern attitude is a far more viable approach for organisations. People desire flexibility from their employers and for working practices that can accommodate particular needs: Childcare, school runs, flexible public holidays, an element of fun.
3. Communication: Managers should open up discussions around matters which directly affect those who work for the company. Build transparency and trust with everyone in the organisation.
4. Trust: Trust is a key driver amongst your team and drives productivity and positivity. Leaders need to learn to trust people to get the job done and not constantly watch them.
“It’s important to ensure each employee truly feels they are part of the company they work for; that they have a voice and their opinion matters.“ Business Services Director, Michelle Meakin
The culture of the organisation can make or break it. Leaders and managers can develop it into a positive asset and help retain employees.
As a leader, you should know what culture you want in your organisation and be a living example of the behaviours that define it. Build a culture you want to work in, listen to your employees, and once you have listened, act upon it.