I recently read an article that discussed a trend in the U.S. I don’t know if it will actually come to fruition, but I certainly think it’s worth consideration. What the article suggested was that we will all be facing a trend called “the Great Resignation.”
I feel we are already seeing it, to some extent, these past two years with increased employee turnover at many businesses. Unfortunately, it’s being compounded by COVID-19 and government handouts, also known as “subsidies.” Early and mid-career workers are starting to look at their jobs and ask: “Is this what I want and how I want to work?”
If this trend continues, we are going to witness a lot of turnover, upward pressure on wages, and a movement toward shorter hours & greater benefits. If you need an example, just look at these current trends in California. They have already started…
Most importantly, what can you do? I see three potential options.
- Train your workers better. Why do we assume that every new employee knows how to do every task and that it’s “cost prohibitive” to teach people how to do even better at their tasks? I remember talking to a manager who stated that margins were tight, and that there was nothing worse than training people and then having them “leave for the competition.” I suggested that there was one thing that was worse, and that’s not training them & having them stay!
- Introduce more automation. We are seeing this more with robotic milkers, automated feed pushers, and “catch pens” used in conjunction with collars on dairy operations. These may look expensive, but what is the alternative, shutting down due to an insufficient labor force?
- Prepare for more turnover. This option isn’t very attractive, and, frankly, can give most of us serious heartburn… Remember, it may look like the least expensive route, and initially it may be so, but there are many hidden costs to this approach, such as the cost of regularly having to hire new people, constant training for the same jobs over & over, the cost of taxing your managers, and these are only IF you can find replacement employees. What if you can’t?
Finally, why participate in the “Great Resignation?” You may have to pay more, but why not invest in your best people and help them to grow and succeed in their roles? Bear in mind that turnover of employees is costly. Let’s be proactive and side-step this destructive trend.
So, think about this question: Are you prepared to overcome this Great Resignation?
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