From the Other Side of Hiring: A New Series HR & Talent Executives
Part 1: Why are People Quitting Now?
The pandemic seems like an obvious starting point as job “quits” began hitting historic highs last April and have continued to climb. There are a multitude of reasons why that number is so high– people close to retirement age retired early, the number of self-owned businesses has skyrocketed, and people that would have otherwise quit during the first year of the pandemic held off, creating a backlog of quits. Psychologists, economists, and industry experts think something more existential is driving the great resignation — a reexamining of their lives.
What was once deemed a temporary reaction to the pandemic has brought about a shift in every aspect of life and, for Americans, that definitely includes the workplace. According to Texas A&M psychologist Anthony Klotz who named the great resignation back in May 2021, it’s an entirely common reaction when people experience trauma, grief, and loss.
“From organizational research, we know that when human beings come into contact with death and illness in their lives, it causes them to take a step back and ask existential questions.” – Klotz
This collective rethinking, combined with a sudden huge uptick in opportunity, has produced one of the most favorable markets for workers. Economists Jason Furman and Wilson Powell III wrote December in a blog post for the Peterson Institute for International Economics, “The US labor market sent mixed signals in November, adding only 210,000 jobs but recording a dramatic decline in the unemployment rate, an increase in the labor force participation rate, and a large increase in employment in the household survey,” adding, “Talk of people quitting their jobs, known as “the Great Resignation,” may give the impression that employment is low.
That is not the case. Since last December, the US labor market has added an average of 550,000 jobs per month and kept pace with 2021 forecasts, even with a limited supply of labor,” but still lower than pre-pandemic levels. Clearly, people are working, just not necessarily in the same job. Economist, Joel Naroff, explains in a recent U.S. News article,
“That doesn’t mean the economy will be weakening. It’s just that there are not a lot of workers sitting around waiting for the perfect job offer.”
The pandemic, combined with an explosive market for workers, will have a lasting impression on workers, employees, and companies’ hiring strategies for years to come. Follow and stay tuned for the next part of the series, where we explore the creative and innovative strategies companies are using to overcome the high attrition rates associated with the Great Resignation.
Katie Stewart is a highly sought-after Executive Branding Strategist, and the Founder of RP, with 12+ years’ experience creating powerful and impactful Resumes, CVs, LinkedIn Profiles, and Bios for Fortune 500 Executives, Board Members, and Senior Leaders across industries. Website: https://resume-professionals.com Email firstname.lastname@example.org.