Expectations of work/life integration are changing at breakneck speed. After more than two years of pandemic adjustments, people are re-evaluating their life priorities and the role work plays, contributing to the Great Resignation. In fact, 36% of employees who quit in the past six months did so without having another job lined up, and 40% of employees plan to leave their current jobs in 3-6 months.
Why is this happening? And where are employees going? The truth is many employees aren’t leaving their jobs for a similar job with more pay and benefits or better brand name. They are leaving for completely different careers that give them more control and flexibility over their lives.
McKinsey finds that while employers think better pay and benefits will attract and keep their people, what employees really want from their companies is to feel valued, a sense of belonging, control over their careers, and flexibility and autonomy in their jobs.
“Companies are failing to understand the full scope of what we’re calling the Great Resignation. Workers aren’t just quitting their jobs—many employees, disillusioned with the way their companies are mishandling the new realities of work, no longer are able or motivated to devote themselves to their jobs the way they did before the pandemic. Call it the Hidden Resignation.”
What are flexibility and autonomy in the workplace? It’s much more than working from a coffee shop, refusing to come into the office, or only working a few hours a day. Flexibility and autonomy at work mean:
1) Flexibility in when, where, and how employees do their work. Research from the Global Culture Report (shown below) indicates that some tasks are easier to do at home, while others are easier to do in the office. Employees need to have a say in what types of work they do where. When they don’t, they may question if the company’s leadership really wants them to succeed.
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