Culture Shift

As a business leader, you likely know the value of putting people at the centre of everything you do. Whether it’s ensuring that your strategies are customer-centric or prioritising employee well-being, a certain level of investment in people is sure to pay off.

However, that may seem more complicated now than it did just a few years ago. Many business leaders are finding it difficult to pinpoint exactly what current and prospective employees are looking for, as attitudes have shifted demonstrably since the start of the pandemic in 2023.

So, amid all this change, how do you anticipate employee needs and maintain your people-centric approach to leadership? The first step is to fully understand this phenomenon.

Understanding the cultural shift in the workforce

It feels like common knowledge that employee attitudes have evolved, and it may feel like jobseekers want it all. And that is, to an extent, true.

PageGroup recently conducted a global talent study with just under 70,000 responses to better understand this phenomenon that we’re calling the “Invisible Revolution.” From this study, we learned several key things:

  • Seismic shifts in employee attitudes and motivations have created a new talent landscape — no age group, country, or industry is unaffected.
  • There’s no going back to the way things were pre-pandemic; the change we see today is here to stay.
  • Job loyalty is now the exception, not the rule. Even generally happy employees are open to moving on to a better opportunity.

While it may be tempting to hope that things will shift back to normal, our data shows that this is not realistic. In fact, things seem to be moving even further in the same direction instead of regressing. We found that here in the U.K., even the Great Resignation has continued longer than anticipated, with 44% of people in the workforce switching jobs in 2022. This is almost triple the rate of resignations we saw in 2021, when the Great Resignation was in the headlines.

So, what’s at the heart of this change, and what can you do to help your organisation navigate it?

View the full report here

How “The Invisible Revolution” affects leadership strategy

We found that the diminishing levels of company loyalty we’re seeing in the workforce are due to the fact that workers have largely stopped looking to their jobs for emotional fulfillment. The sense of accomplishment and happiness they used to seek in work is now coming from their family, friends, loved ones, hobbies, or other areas of their personal lives.

This is why work-life balance has become so key. In fact, almost half of the American respondents to our survey said that they would deny a promotion if they thought it would negatively affect their well-being. Work-life balance was even ranked more important than salary to job satisfaction.

The three things that contribute to work-life balance in employees’ minds are salary, flexibility, and career progression. Professionals want to be paid appropriately for their work, have the opportunity to advance and grow, but also be empowered to achieve success on their own terms. Getting this dynamic right is paramount, as it is your best bet when addressing retention.

Creating an environment that embraces personal growth and autonomy, and rewards those who succeed in these conditions, is going to be imperative for leaders in 2023 and beyond. This all starts at the top, with the senior leadership and the C-suite, so be sure your messaging aligns with this strategy if you do choose to adopt it. 

Key next steps

Adopting this people-centric mentality is not going to boost attraction and retention rates overnight, but it is an excellent first step.

Another action we recommend in our report is to do a comprehensive audit of your Employee Value Proposition (EVP). This should go way beyond pay and flexibility and get to the heart of the issue: at a time when loyalty is at a premium, how and why should people connect with their employer on a human level? Reflecting worker priorities in an EVP could be a great differentiator when it comes to hiring new staff or retaining existing talent.

To learn more about the "Invisible Revolution” and our recommendations for navigating it, please download the full report today.

View the full report here

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