As marketers know, you ignore demographics at your peril. As baby boomers, there were so many of us we competed for a space in the family car, in the classroom, for a job. Gen X’ers competed to be seen or heard when we wouldn’t give up our jobs. Millennials are a bigger cohort than boomers, but there aren’t enough of them at the right levels to fill all the jobs we are vacating as COVID makes us rethink how we are spending our time. Demographics made it easy to hire for the last 40 years, but has flipped how we need to recruit today. >
What do you do when new competitors emerge? It used to be that the U.S. was the largest manufacturer in the world. It has been many years since Asian countries- first Japan then China became major competitors. Many US companies moved their manufacturing off shore to take advantage of cheaper labor. Then companies started to outsource customer service to other countries, then software development. Now with the changes to how we work since COVID, many companies have been working from home for over 17 months. Not just some of the work has been done away from the office, ALL of it was. Guess what? We have created new competition to the way we used to work and many of our team members have no intention of going back. How do we turn that to our advantage? >
When the pandemic began last year, and many parts of the economy hit a hard stop, I warned that how we treat our team members will long be remembered. They may not leave us in the moment, but the opportunity would come with the recovery. In case you hadn’t noticed, that moment has arrived.
Contacted on LinkedIn, or by recruiters they have never met, our best team members are being hunted and offered really sweet packages. And, when they get hired away because they can’t turn down a 20% increase in their pay (after all they have kids who will go to college if school finally goes back to in-person), you will have to pay their replacement more than your current 10 year employees with more experience. Argh!
What to do? First of all, say thank you. Seriously. Personally thank your team. Individually if possible but if you are communicating by video, look right into the camera and say thank you to your team for getting you through this crazy year. Acknowledge the parents (especially the Mom’s) who heroically kept our families and our companies going. Acknowledge the loss of family members and health that many suffered.
Double down on your great culture. Hopefully, all of the work you did in the last year to focus on your core strengths, to communicate well with your team whether in person or at the work place, to listen deeply to them and to customers, will make you an extremely desirable place to work. So, if a few team members are recruited away, you will be able to replace them with great talent.
Start recruiting now by creating or reinforcing a company presence on LinkedIn that shows who you are. Make sure your website is attractive to potential recruits. Remember, if they are now remote employees, they can work for some other company in another time zone. If you ever were in the driver’s seat on hiring, that has disappeared. If I haven’t scared you enough, read this article from Joe Galvin, Chief Research Officer at Vistage. And, if you company executive, and are not in Vistage, ask yourself, why not?
At the Vistage Executive Summit. Ben Casoncha challenged the attendees to ponder the agreement they make when they hire a new employee.
With great enthusiasm, a new addition is welcomed to the organization and within a few hours, >
All week I’ve been hearing that long-term employees are taking new jobs for higher pay. Is it spring? Is it the pollen? Are the blooming trees and flowers bewitching our people?? >
Conversations about increases in the minimum wage are in the past tense – at least in California.
“How is the increase affecting you?”
“Have you had to bump up workers who were a dollar above the minimum by 50c or a dollar?”
“Can you get anyone to work at minimum wage?”
“Can you get any qualified applicants at any rate?”
From every sector of the economy, I’m hearing of long term employees taking jobs at other firms that offer them more pay, or a new opportunity or it is closer to home.
Don’t think this is just lower wage employees. I’ve heard of high level operations managers, partners at law firms, senior sales executives, insurance brokers with a good book of business, and of course mid-level managers who might have looked since 2008, but were not tempted in the uncertain economy. Most of these folks were not looking. The offer came out of the blue. Your company story must be more compelling than that siren song from the land of green green grass on the other side of the fence.
This affects you in 3 ways:
- You might be able to pick up some talent that wouldn’t have considered a change before;
2, You might lose good employees who aren’t looking that get solicited out of the blue;
- You may have to raise the pay in certain positions pro-actively to retain your very best people.
Most people wait until a really good employee leaves to get a jump on this. Don’t be that employer. Start addressing the issue this week. By next week, you might be chasing a good employee as they walk out your front door.
picture courtesy of chooseust.com
Two weeks ago, Wal-Mart announced they were raising minimum wages to >