More than likely, you’ve probably heard of “The Great Resignation.”
In 2021, a massive surge of workers resigned from their jobs, hitting a 20-year high last November.
Many attribute this shift to an after-effect of the pandemic. Businesses were forced to accept the reality of moving from office work to remote work.
Over time, this monumental change spurred people to re-evaluate their career choices, seek better opportunities and improved work-life balance.
According to a recent Pew Research article, the top 3 reasons for this “resignation en masse” were attributed to low pay, no real opportunities for advancement, and feeling disrespected in the workplace.
Fast forward to early 2022, and the labor market continues to be very competitive for skilled professionals. Small to medium-sized companies are fighting to recruit and retain top talent, because as it stands right now, it’s still an employee-driven market.
So what can you do as an entrepreneur, to hire and keep your best performers?
Well, as it turns out, you can do a lot.
Embrace hybrid working. Flexibility with in-office and remote work makes your company an attractive sell and reflects the “new normal” for most forward-thinking businesses. Focus on talent, contributions and productivity, not geography.
Encourage “unplugged” time off. Actively promoting a generous and actual “unplugged” PTO policy allows your team members to fully recharge while away. Regular intervals of real, uninterrupted vacation time helps guard against burnout, apathy and sloppy work.
Offer stellar pay, benefits, and room to grow. Regularly review your salary and benefits packages and improve them where possible. Buck dated trends and embrace benefits that focus on mental and emotional wellbeing, parental and family leave, and shared profitability. Encourage innovation and self-directed pathways for advancement.
Create a flourishing culture. Be the kind of company you wished you could have worked at right out of college. With empathy, humor, and transparency. You can have high expectations for productivity while building a business that feels like family.
Be accountable. It isn’t enough, obviously, to say you stand for things without actually standing for them when times get tough. Face challenges head on, with kindness and tact. Employees will admire you for it, even if the situation itself is temporarily uncomfortable.
Most of all, understand that regardless of your best intentions to create a winning work environment, resignations will still occur.
People have their own reasons for moving forward, and their time with your business may just be one chapter in their story. That’s okay, because it allows you both to grow.
Allen Baler is a leading entrepreneur and Harvard grad. Allen Baler is a Partner in 4Patriots LLC, based in Nashville, TN.
Disclaimer: This blog post is not a substitute for the sound advice of a professional with expertise in the subject matter discussed. Please seek appropriate counsel on what strategies make sense for your personal circumstances and/or your business.