For CEOs and Boards—Trends in Employer Branding
People quitting their jobs in the United States is now at an all-time high. The Great Resignation is here—Covid-19 has seen to that. With an influx of vacancies and an urgency from employers to retain top talent, the priority for organizations in 2022 must be retaining employees in order to serve their customers, keep shareholders happy, and keep the economy going.
A shocking 4.4 million Americans left their jobs in September 2021 and with the United States serving as a bellwether, numbers for other countries will be reflected in this trend.
“It is becoming clearer that rather than resigning from work altogether, many employees are actually leaving in search of something more fulfilling and better suited to their values and life choices” (WEF: Explainer: what is the Great Reshuffle and how is it affecting the jobs market? Feb 2022).
This brings us to the Great Reshuffle. Many unhappy corporate executives have set up their own businesses, others are searching rapidly for better-paid, more flexible and fulfilling employment, and some are changing careers altogether.
Gen Z Perspectives
It’s also important to consider Gen Z and their priorities. They are asking the questions that many of us never had the opportunity to ask in the height of our careers:
- Does this serve me?
- Is it meaningful work?
- What is the corporate culture like?
- Is there flexibility in remote work vs. on-site work?
- Will I feel valued by my leaders? What is leadership like?
- How does their product impact the environment?
Leverage Effective Employer Branding Best Practices
We have organized a list of items to help your organization survive the Great Resignation and navigate the Great Reshuffle.
SaaS Case Study Mortimer and Ebenezer
Mortimer was the CTO of a Fortune 1000 SaaS company in the midmarket in North America. Boasting the highest employee retention rate (measured by division), he reported to the CEO with a peer team of 6 others.
An expert in post-merger technology integrations, Mortimer was popular with the 240 employees who reported to him both directly and indirectly. Mortimer understood the magic and power of recognition and consistently rewarded his people and it cost him little, but effort and time. Mortimer recognized the individual contributions of the people in his division serving as a role model to others.
Mortimer’s teams consistently delivered new products and product feature updates on time, on budget, and with impeccable quality.
Retaining and engaging key technology professionals is a cause and result worth celebrating—however, this is where it went sadly awry. Mortimer’s peer saw to that. Ebenezer had a reputation for bullying, stonewalling, and wreaking havoc in the company.
The CEO repeatedly ignored it and the senior leadership team had the highest turnover rates in the industry. Despite the disfunction, the company remained profitable, but I cannot help but wonder how much MORE profitable they would have been if this behavior had been addressed.
Don’t let this happen to your organization. There are many effective resources and solutions available for this type of challenge. Ask us!
What happened to Mortimer? He left. With a broken heart and a deflated team left behind, Mortimer moved to an organization whose values aligned with his own.
Engagement (or disengagement) starts at the top.
An astounding 44% of workers can work remotely during the COVID-19 crisis while 24% of workers are unable to perform their current role.
“This estimate indicates an aspiration to expand the availability of remote work” (WEF: Future of Jobs 2020).
If you have a top-performing employee who would benefit greatly from a hybrid model of remote work, they will absolutely seek out other options that will accommodate this. Listen to your employees and make sure they know that there are flexibility options and even more importantly, safe spaces for conversations around adjustments. This can make or break your dream team.
The value of corporate empathy as a retention strategy
The world of employment is changing rapidly and here is what we know for sure: Successful organizations begin with the people and successful people are evidently valued at their place of work.
“Leaders should consider two truths: first, talent turnover is an expensive problem and therefore must be solved. Second, it’s a problem that can be solved.
The empathetic organization embraces a culture, starting in the C-suite, that practices and values empathy. That means developing emotional intelligence at the enterprise level, and genuinely listening to and sympathizing with workers’ feelings. Empathy comes naturally to humans. It’s the right thing to do and it also brings business benefits. When employees feel heard, understood and cared for, they work harder, take more risks, and help others succeed. This, in turn, improves talent retention” (WEF: Struggling to retain top talent? Try corporate empathy, Jan 2022).
What to do next
If you found this information useful, consider sharing it with your team at your next meeting. Contact us today for a confidential (but frank) conversation around employee engagement and employer branding. At Westgate, we optimize CEO performance and pave the way to enhanced relationships with the board, investors, and employees, which collectively leads to higher profitability and earnings per share.