One size fits all when it comes to personal, hybrid, and remote work styles.
Good adaptation to new ways of working can strengthen leadership success in attracting, integrating and retaining talent. Inadequate adjustment can lead to what many call the “Great Resignation.”
“Great resignation” is in a way a misnomer, as the vast majority of those who quit a job switch to another, more attractive job at the same time (hence “Great Hire”). The goal of many companies today is to be a “net talent gainer” who hires more people than they lose, with a focus on why people join and stay as well as why they leave.
Contrary to many current beliefs, remote and hybrid working arrangements are not new. Before the pandemic, around 350 million people worldwide worked remotely, which is around 10% of the global workforce. During the pandemic, the number rose to around half to two thirds of the global workforce, depending on the region.
As companies emerge from the pandemic, Net Talent Gainers distinguish themselves through the following leadership practices related to on-premise, hybrid and remote work:
1. Be employee centric and meet employees where they are. Organizations and executives that can offer their employees the flexibility to work where and when they want enjoy a significant competitive advantage when it comes to accessing talent over less flexible colleagues. Employer surveys suggest remote working will eventually stabilize at 25 to 40% of the global workforce – about three to four times higher than pre-pandemic levels. Other research shows that 85% of U.S. workers who worked remotely during the pandemic prefer to work either remotely on a permanent basis or in hybrid arrangements (most want to be able to choose). Numerous reports show that flexibility is a motivator for job changes in 2021 in all demographic groups and is an effective strategy for companies to become net talent winners.
2. Give people a reason to be concerned with jobs. Whether employees are on-site, hybrid, or remote, Net Talent Gainers update their value propositions to create employee experiences that go well beyond the basics of a job or a paycheck. You start with a purpose that creates continuity in corporate culture as business models and daily operations change. They ensure that pay is competitive and fair in the changing labor markets after the pandemic. They continue to modernize their health and wealth benefits, emphasizing physical, emotional, financial, and social well-being. They create integrative career opportunities and attractive work environments. They highlight the strength of teams and collaboration, and build strong relationships. Few companies can do all of this, so effective leaders understand the power of compromise. For example, if an organization offers less flexible work arrangements, it can create compensation through more attractive work environments and services, as well as through payment.
3rd Understand that treating people fairly does not mean treating them equally. One of the most striking outcomes of the events of 2020 is the recognition by both organizations and employees that fairness does not mean equality. Employees want to be seen, heard and understood and their individual work needs met. At the same time, companies are no longer financially able to offer all employees identical work regulations and services. Hence, they recognize the need to optimize programs in terms of employee needs / preferences in relation to cost. Successful leaders focus on fairness, dignity, and belonging, as well as creating diverse and inclusive environments in which the voices of employees are heard. As the focus on remote working has generally focused on the needs of higher paid knowledge workers, executives have also taken steps to meet the needs of the pandemic’s valued essential workforce and all demographic cohorts as they consider new models of work.
4th Look for the ROI of remote and hybrid work. Remote and hybrid models are effective for some, but not all, organizations or employees. Many executives have questioned the return on investment of the long list of new demands on companies in the current environment. Net Talent Gainers have delved deeper into remote and hybrid labor agreements to understand their costs and benefits beyond reducing real estate footprint and operating costs. They take into account the potential for improved access to talent markets and different demographic groups. They take into account productivity, engagement, sales, culture, health, innovation and risk. For some, analysis leads to decisions to improve remote and hybrid work with support programs and culture. For others, it encourages broad return to work with different support programs and cultures. Regardless of the result, Talent Gainers make decisions based on in-depth tax and employee-related analyzes that take into account the effects on and through the workforce.
Net talent gainers understand that what they achieved today may not necessarily bring them tomorrow. They also know that the behavior of executives and managers must constantly evolve. Successful leaders and managers acquire new skills to operate in new environments by dealing with agility, ambiguity, asynchronous flow, remote management, and compassionate and purposeful leadership. You develop flexible, fair and convincing offers for employees, supported by strong business analyzes and reasons.