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Great resignation? Great exhaustion? Great expectations?

Given all the recent press, you’ve no doubt heard about ‘the great resignation’. Essentially, as employees worldwide ponder their return to work, they’re also realising what they do (and don’t like) about their work/life priorities and doing something about it. In fact, research suggests that almost 40% of Australians are planning to change jobs.

As leaders, we know that our people are our greatest asset, and losing them is expensive. So what are you doing to buck the trend?

The first step is to review data and learn from expertise and experiences. Here are some points to consider:

Point 1. Great resignation

Do you understand if and why your employees are considering resigning?

“There’s a clear disconnect between why employers think their employees are leaving and the actual reasons behind employee exits,” writes McKinsey. Their research reveals these top 3 as viewed by the employee and employer separately.

Employee View Employer View
Valued by organisation/manager Looking for a better job
Sense of belonging Inadequate compensation
Flexibility Work-life balance

Point 2. Great exhaustion

A feeling of languishing. 

This week, we polled 70 leaders from across Australia to discover their priorities. These are some of the results:

  1. 90% of leaders agree that COVID experiences are very different by state, sector, organisation, and individual. There is no one size fits all solution.
  2. 93% of leaders agree that workplace experiences will be very important to the ongoing success of people, teams and the whole organisation. There is no one size fits all workplace design solution.
  3. 39% of leaders agree that digital team building will be a priority next year, and this was the highest figure from 6 options.

Our conclusion right now is that planning for the future is incredibly difficult. Many teams are exhausted, some are finding it hard to focus, some are waiting for clarity, and some are just so busy with the day to day.

Point 3. Great expectations

Our research from the GFC reminds us that organisations that respond to disruption through proactive collaboration, innovation and effort are more successful. In addition, in a recent webinar, ‘The Future Office is Hybrid’, The Swinburne Centre for the New Workforce highlighted the role of ‘purpose’ as a powerful lever for leaders.

Simply put, people join organisations because of the organisation’s purpose and leadership. People leave organisations because of their team purpose and leadership.

With the emergence of hybrid working, team purpose is more important than ever. Teams need to understand their WHY clearly, and every person in every team needs to understand their team’s WHY. It’s about being actively engaged rather than just being told.

What can you do about it?

  1. Understand what matters most to your team members.
    What do they want from the workplace – flexibility, a quiet place to concentrate, a place to create and collaborate? Have conversations and find out what matters most to each individual. Spark discussions and ask questions to stimulate conversation.

    > How did the Leadership @ Work cards spark a surprising conversation? 

  2. Engage your team.
    Create your team purpose – together – and bring everyone on the journey.
    > How did Morton Property transition to a new post-Covid workplace that people will love?

  3. Make sure you’re using your collaborative tools effectively and productively.
    Be involved in the conversations that are happening online. Be open with your strategy and respond to the variety of needs, tools, personalities, priorities. 
    > Explore tools to help hybrid and remote teams collaborate more effectively online.

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