After a year filled with uncertainty and record-breaking unemployment, millions of people have decided to leave the workforce—and I am by no means exaggerating. The Labor Department estimates that 4 million employees quit their jobs in April, placing job vacancies at a 20 year high. The trouble is no one wants to fill them! This is being called The Great Resignation, and whether you are a company or a job seeker, the implications are significant.
2020 was tumultuous for individuals and businesses. Just how you analyzed operations, people used this time to reassess their lives. The flexibility provided through remote schedules (and paid unemployment) proved to be a valuable part of that. Without the stress of a daily commute or routine grind, employees have decided they want more – whether it be flexible schedules, additional pay, or simply a shift within their careers. Here is what you need to consider:
Let your teams work how they are most comfortable.
If you want employees in the office some of the time, consider implementing a hybrid work schedule. Most employees are not opposed to coming in one, two, or even three days a week, providing it is on their terms. They want to feel in charge of their day without losing hours on end commuting, missing children’s events, or feeling comfortable within their own homes. This is about empowering your employees to work in a way that ignites and engages them.
Increase employee incentives.
Note that while a salary increase never hurts, that is only one part of the package. Flexible, remote opportunities (as stated above) and other perks, such as vacation time or even paid family leave, are just as important. Consider what you can afford to do to incentivize employment. If you are not sure, just listen to what your top employees are saying right now. They are likely already expressing what you can do to make things better; you need only listen (or ask).
Make sure your company stands for something.
Gone are the days of working 9-5 without feeling as if you have made a larger impact. Employees want to feel as if you, as their employer, care about them and their community. They want to grow with an organization through talent development programs. They also want to ensure that diversity, equity, and inclusion are at the center of all initiatives. So, think long and hard about the culture you have built to find ways to improve it.
Just because millions of people resigned from their positions does not mean that finding a job will be a piece of cake—it may now be much more competitive. The reason being that opportunities that are likely appealing to you, and others (work from home, remote positions) are far and few between. This means that millions of people will be vying for the same roles you are, with the same goals in mind. As such, you need to be strategic with your search:
There is nothing worse than conducting a job search without direction. You must know what you are searching for to hone in, find, and prepare. If you are interested in transitioning into an entirely new career or industry, take inventory of your hard (technical) and soft (more transferable) skills to determine what trajectory to take. Then, note what your negotiables and non-negotiables are before you proceed.
Optimize your resume and LinkedIn profile.
Your resume should be ATS (applicant tracking system) friendly and customized for each position so that it scores high enough to land you an interview. You will need to gear your LinkedIn profile for these roles as well. If you are not sure how to do either, my comprehensive program here at the Job Search School can show you. All of your materials are personally reviewed by me (my methods are proven effective).
Learn how to network and negotiate.
It would be best if you connected with others effortlessly while effectively negotiating the terms of your employment. Doing both well is key to ensuring your next job, whatever that may be, is something that brings you much joy and purpose. You are embarking on this journey because the status quo is not what you want for the next phase of your career. As such, you must take charge of what you want and fight for it because no one else will do it for you.
What is next?
I believe The Great Resignation is a: 1.) demand for better working conditions; and 2.) an opportunity for employers and employees alike.
I am, however, concerned. Since people have saved money over the past year (with additional income rolling in), they may feel a bit emboldened. Please know that these funds will not last forever. If the money runs dry before people can find positions that place a spark within them, individuals may become desperate, settling for jobs that were worse than what they had before. Therefore, it is essential that you have the tools and resources necessary to succeed.
- Gain clarity on your next steps, as well as your negotiables and non-negotiables, so that your next job is one that you love.
- Find positions that match your wants and needs quickly – no more spending hours a day on end searching for a new job.
- Transition into a new career with ease, using the skills and experience you already have.
- Network effectively both online and in-person so that you are a prime candidate for positions that are never publicly posted.
- Create a resume and LinkedIn profile that stand out to recruiters and hiring managers – landing an interview.
- Prepare for and nail your interview with ease, knowing what to say and how to say it.
- Negotiate the terms of your employment and salary to get what you want. And more!
I have helped thousands of professionals land their dream job and would love to help you too. Sign up for my FREE webinar to learn more! In the words of Winston Churchill, “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.”