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What is The Great Resignation and Why Should Leaders Know About it for Employee Retention

COVID-19 started to disrupt the labor market three years ago, and to this day it continues to rattle labor forces, as employers struggle to keep their best workers on board. Currently, we find ourselves in a labor shortage, as the pandemic has brought on challenges that revolve around childcare, early retirement, low wages, greater healthcare needs, self-reflection, and concerns about catching COVID and passing it on to family have kept people at home.

In 2021 33 million Americans quit their job, an act that has become known as The Great Resignation, and to this day companies are struggling to hang on to their best people. As a result, leaders seek to hire employee retention training companies that understand The Great Resignation, and who know how to help organizations recover from its sting.

In order to support one’s labor force while protecting their organization’s bottom line, it is critical for company leaders to work with their HR departments to hire specialty consultants who know how to help brands recover from The Great Resignation, while empowering and enabling leaders to keep their best workers on board, even during the most turbulent times.

The Great Resignation Taught Companies that They Didn’t Understand What Mattered to their Employees

Some companies performed exit interviews when people walked away from their job during The Great Resignation. However, a surprisingly low percentage of these companies actually performed stay interviews before the chaos exploded.

According to Dick Finnegan, Employee turnover expert, author and speaker, “one-third of U.S. workers voluntarily quit their jobs in 2021. No one saw that coming. Corporate America thought everyone would be glad to have their old jobs back”.

However, as Dick Finnegan indicates here, most people were not at all interested in getting their old jobs back, and thousands of companies were left struggling to re-staff. Understanding The Great Resignation, in this context, speaks to the necessity of conducting stay interviews.

You may be asking yourself, what is the difference between a stay interview and an exit interview? A stay interview is conducted by members of management to help them understand why employees decide to stay in their jobs, while also learning what might cause them to leave. In a stay interview that is performed correctly, managers will ask standard, structured questions in a casual setting while embracing the conversational approach. This could be done over lunch, or over a cup of coffee. Most stay interviews only last 30 minutes.

In an exit interview, an interview is conducted when an employee is on his or her way out, and the organization wants to learn why that employee has chosen to leave.

The Great Resignation has taught corporate leaders that the stay interview is a critical thing to master in order for organizations to collect the right data that will enable them to make the necessary changes to stay profitable and keep the right people, in the right seats, that will help their company hit their growth goals.

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