If there’s one positive to come out of the pandemic, it’s people’s reflection on how they spend their days, and whether their work is truly satisfying beyond simply receiving a paycheck.
Early on, for example, one of our team discovered, when she went to make a hair appointment (during the brief period between the first lockdown and re-opening) that her young hair stylist had decided to go back to school for a different career. While this was inconvenient in terms of the need to source a new stylist, our team member understood the importance of finding work you love, and encouraged the young woman to pursue her dreams.
But since then, we’ve experienced a mass exodus. Dubbed “The Great Resignation,” it applies to people leaving their jobs in droves, like lemmings called to dive off the cliff of the known. While this is admirable for the people going in search of their calling, it’s left many service businesses scrambling for employees.
Yet LinkedIn influencer and author Whitney Johnson flips the narrative, renaming this transition, The Great Aspiration. She writes, “In 2022, the Year of The Great Aspiration, an ambitious workforce is on the march, seeking better pay, better work-life balance, and better opportunities amid a wealth of open jobs.
“Having been disrupted in ways we could have never imagined, flexwork, the hybrid office, the constantly evolving stay-at-home orders taught us just how innovative and resilient our companies and we are. It was stressful, but we grew.”
What might this look like for your business in the year ahead?
- Spill It. This is one time spill containment isn’t warranted. When a member of your crew or team has a light bulb moment, listen up and encourage them to spill it. Be willing to innovate, and those people thinking of seeking greener pastures might just decide it’s pretty green right here.
- Say Yes to Good Work. If you think people don’t need to be recognized for doing the work they’re paid to do, think again. Especially the service workers who are cleaning up spills and keeping your business humming behind the scenes. If you’re still working mostly remotely, celebrating them with a video meeting and virtual cake — and maybe a little something extra in their paycheck — can keep them on your team in 2022.
- Acknowledge the Elephant. Most of all, be upfront about people’s desire for fulfilling employment and greater work-life balance. Ask them to spill the beans about what would make the job more satisfying. While you may not be able to fulfill all of their desires, listening and acknowledging what people want goes a long way towards creating a more collaborative environment.
At Impact Absorbents, we’ve always been an employee-first company. Many of our team are actually family, but everyone is treated this way. We’re proud to be a woman-owned company, known for creating premier spill clean up and spill containment solutions. This is our 30th year in business, so we’ve learned a few things about how to keep team members happy.
Here’s to a new year of aspiration, inspiration and innovation for all!