The Great Resignation is happening right now around the globe. Can the Modern Employer Brand help save your company from it?

Also known as the Big Quit, this on-going mass movement of workers started in the spring of 2021 and was brought on by the Covid19 pandemic.

People are quitting their jobs and looking for better bosses, a brighter future and a bigger vision.

What is the Great Resignation?

It is a global mass wave of employees quitting their jobs recorded by multiple studies and research around the world on how employees drove workers to quit.

What causes the Great Resignation?

The biggest reason behind this Big Quit are the millions of disappointed employee experiences on how employers are treating their workers during the pandemic. 

We all know how easy it is to make promises and interact with others when the times are good and life is easy.

However, our behavior, actions and ability to adapt are being put to test when we hit the rough patch. 

When the pandemic hit the globe, we certainly hit a rough patch. Now the Great Resignation is hitting many employers. Can you stop it?

The pandemic has made it evident many organizations have developed their employee value propositions, people promises, value statements and company culture related statements out of candy floss. It was all bunch of sugar coating that eventually made us sick.

A human being was built to cope with sudden extreme stress. But when the disruption doesn’t decrease or go away, we start to see the true colors in our own and other people’s behavior.

Employers are people too. They just act on the plan and resources created for a company ID number. 

People working in management and leadership positions are humans just like you and I. Some better equipped to cope with stress and change, some not. And it doesn’t make it easier when your hands are being tied with company policies.

The pandemic has made it evident many organizations have developed their employee value propositions, people promises, value statements and company culture related statements out of candy floss. It was all bunch of sugar coating that eventually made us sick.

The Big Quit has been brought on by employers who failed when their employees really needed them.

And now that the immediate threat has passed, people are walking out in masses.

Which industries are suffering the most?

According to a Harvard Business Review article, resignation rates are the highest:

  • in the tech and health care industries
  • among mid-career employees

The problem is, too many companies are struggling to address and accept the Great Resignation. They don’t understand what makes their employees leave in the first place. 

Organizations are failing to see what needs fixing

Many organizations have been hit bad with the pandemic or the restrictions caused by the pandemic.

All organizations are anxious to hold onto their employees. However, instead of fixing the root causes, employers most in trouble try to fix the leakage and offer in-your-face solutions like bumping up the pay and benefits rather than sensing appreciation, employees sense transaction.

The expectation for a more humane workplaces and leadership cultures has been coming for a long time. It should not be a surprise to any employer and HR who is keeping up with the current affairs. 

The pandemic called us out on it, finally.

Employees are craving for improved human aspects to their work.

Things like:

  • empathy
  • appreciation
  • being heard
  • transparency
  • honesty
  • equal rights and better acceptance of diversity
  • more flexibility 
  • better options to balance work and personal life are on the list of the more humane aspects in work life.

As summarized well in this McKinsey article, employees want a renewed and revised sense of purpose in their work.

After the long period of working remotely from home of being isolated or distanced from coworkers and customers at the work place, people are calling out for social and interpersonal connections. We are all yearning for the return of they the sense of shared identity. More than benefits and perks, your employees want to feel valued by your organization and managers. 

Employers who fail to understand this, risk their business success. The evidence is clear. Your people will walk away and they are not coming back.

The solution is not to offer more money, the solution is to increase empathy in your leadership culture. And start showing it fast before everyone has walked away.  

How building the modern employer brand can help save your company

Image summarizing the 5 points in how building the modern employer brand can help in coping with the great resignation

People are increasingly searching for purpose in their work and at the workplace.

If your company culture has the empathy, purpose and humane values in it, now it’s time to start showing it. 

My method for building the modern employer brand, The Magnetic Employer Branding Method™️ uses business storytelling to match talent minds with your company mission.

What our tagline pinpoints for building the modern employer brand are:

(1) Position your employees’ needs at the centre of your employer branding messages.

Make your message about them. Communicate and share your thoughts and information on what is relevant and meaningful for them, not what is relevant and meaningful for your business right now.

Unless of course, it’s them, your employees.

(2) Position yourself as the guide and the work-to-life mentor or advisor they can trust (again).

Offer your employees a plan to get out of this grunt.

What this means is either communicate what the existing plan is or start asking them what the plan should be.

You just need to offer them a plan other wise they won’t follow you.

(3) Use messaging and communication in making your authentic company purpose and mission more clear and evident.

You need to get your employees’ attention again and start growing their awareness of your purpose and mission again. It is quite probable they forgot while they worked from home. Or they forgot while they worked under extreme conditions at the work place.

Your employees need a renewed clarity on what your mission and purpose were again.

Have conversations about what those mean for you as a team, as a department or as a firm.

Discuss what the actual execution of your purpose and mission should and could look like in the context of the team’s work. Share concrete examples of your people successfully delivering on your goals, mission and purpose.

(4) Start expressing empathy in your communication and behaviour.

Make sure your team managers and leaders engage in showing empathy to your employees’ situation and their worries.

Most employees are in fact struggling. even those who never have.

I have personally struggled a lot this year and realized much of it is a direct result of the pandemic. All the anxiety and stress are coming out now that the immediate threat has been resolved by vaccinations.

You need to make empathy and compassion a permanent status and start providing company-wide solutions to achieving a healthier and more meaningful future together as you work to get out of the pandemic.

(5) Decide on a communication strategy with key themes for the next 6-12 months

Now more than ever, you need to focus and limit your messaging. Choose key talking points and limit them to not more than four for the next 6-12 months.

All your internal and also some of your external talent audience messaging must focus on growing strong awareness of your empathy, purpose and mission, build trust and engage your employees to create together a better work-to-life with your organization after the pandemic.

But be mindful, the worst thing you could do right now is to fake it. 

If your company doesn’t have these expected humane characteristics and values in it, you need to start clearing out the mess and developing your workplace first.

Do not communicate something that isn’t true and you cannot deliver on. 

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