You may probably be thinking, workplace culture, uuuhm, where should I care? In November 2021, 4.5 million Americans voluntarily left their jobs – an all-time high. The phenomenon has birthed what is known as the Great Resignation, but Bharat Ramamurti, deputy director of the White House National Economic Council, referred to it as “the Great Upgrade”, which sits on the existence or quality of organizational or workplace culture.
While this data only portrays what is happening in America, the rest of the world has also experienced this in the workplaces. Maybe you know someone who resigned in search of greener pastures, flexibility or even meaning?
Unsettled by the pandemic, most people are considering our jobs with a fresh perspective. Some are quitting, in what has been dubbed the Great Resignation. But, for many, it’s more of a Great Rethink. Do we really like our employers’ culture? Do we feel that we’re fairly treated and have the advancement opportunities we want?
However, it is not all gloom and doom in the workplace. Most people who have resigned have done so to take better jobs. Most of the people who resigned are those who are underpaid while others left to find meaning and purpose in life. The ‘great resignation’ while majorly connotated with toxic work cultures is now viewed as ‘the great upgrade’.
The great upgrade is crucial in rethinking workplace culture in various ways such as hiring, firing and people strategies. Gone are the days when employers looked at resumes and conducted cut throat interviews. While the interview process should be rigorous, it is pertinent that an employer is clear on the purpose their company or organization serves, is clear on how they communicate their ‘why’ and is also clear on the values that govern the organization.
These three things enable leaders to lead with a purpose in mind and also attract new hires whose values also align with that of the company. Empathy and communication is now vital in workplaces and ensuring an open door policy between the leaders and employees. It is also important to value every one at the workplace regardless of what position they hold – this goes to ensure employees feel valued and respected.
In the great upgrade and rethinking the workplace culture, people are looking for jobs in organizations that are clear on their goals, values and their ‘why’. While money and other benefits are important, more people are seeking employment in organizations that offer flexibility, mental health benefits and a sense of meaning.