What Is Causing the Great Resignation?
There are several things that are behind what we are calling the great resignation, and many of them are connected to the pandemic, even if not directly.
Firstly, many knowledge workers moved to work-from-home situations during the pandemic. They discovered that they could do their jobs effectively from home and began to question why they were forced to commute to an office. When no answers better than “we say so” were forthcoming, talented people dug in their heels – and they’re still dug in!
Secondly, many people realised that in an airborne pandemic, sharing space in crowded workspaces could be life threatening. Employees started to question their employers’ motives. Were they really being asked to risk illness so they could be in the “right” location to do their jobs?
Third, and mainly affecting lower skilled people in people facing jobs, many have simply changed careers during the ongoing lockdowns. When you’re a restaurant worker who can’t work, it’s a good time to find other uses for your talents. Some industries simply can’t rehire people because the talent has moved on.
Finally, employees realised that they didn’t have to live in expensive cities. Many people have already moved to smaller towns where the cost of living is lower, and the quality of life is better. It’s hard to force talent to come back to an office that’s now a two-hour drive away!
Collectively, people have changed the way they think about work, and for the first time, they’re not allowing employers to talk them out of it.