Who is dissatisfied and why?
Employees have quit in droves in 2021 and 2022 and the age group that has seen the most drastic numbers is 30 to 45 year olds. Their resignation rate was 20% higher in 2021 compared to the previous year. A survey of 5,600 respondents revealed dissatisfaction starts as early as 25 and existed prior to the pandemic. Additionally, the survey found that only 38.2% of workers believe pay is the more important factor in job satisfaction. Yet, offering increased pay is the most common response managers have to the news that an employee is leaving. There seems to be a disconnect.
So, what will improve employee satisfaction? What do employees crave?
They crave inspiring work that harmoniously connects who they are and what they do. They crave the feeling that they are working towards something bigger than themselves. And they crave the autonomy to shape their role in it. Leaders can begin fulfilling some of these cravings by following four strategies.
4 Re-Engagement Strategies
Balancing work and life can prove difficult for employees in the 25 to 45 age range. Their careers are quickly shifting and advancing. Their personal responsibilities are changing with marriage, kids, caregiving, etc. But it’s not balance workers are seeking out…it’s alignment.
Work-life alignment is more than just balancing the time spent at home versus at work. Let employees have some level of autonomy over their hours, their projects, and their teams. Find out how you can help them in nurturing both their careers and their personal lives.
Find out employees’ motivators. Nearly all employees want to work for a leader that inspires them, but only 36% of them say they do. Invest in manager-employee relationships to discover what drives them. Ask what brought them to the job. Was it the role itself? The organization? The paycheck? Stay open-minded and you’ll learn more about each team member. Then, assign them projects they’ll specifically find meaningful and reshape their goals.
Engage employees in recruiting. Many feel uninvolved in the hiring process. In turn, they feel like they don’t have an influence or an important say. Treat recruiting as an opportunity to engage your current employees while you’re looking to bring in new talent. Let employees give input on job descriptions. They can provide feedback for improvement. Plus, reading a great job description can rekindle the excitement that brought them to your organization.
Connect employees’ work to the big picture. Nearly all surveyed respondents (92.4% to be exact) said they would do better work if could see how the quality of their work matters to larger strategies and goals. Explain the correlations to your employees so they can gain a sense of purpose. You know they have an impact on the company goals, you just have to help them see it too! Nominations based on your organization’s values are another prime opportunity to connect the dots.
As a leader, don’t just cross your fingers and hope your best people don’t resign. Find ways to re-engage employees with alignment, inspiration, agency, and insight. You’ll forge a new path for employee satisfaction. One that’s elevating and energizing.