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Opinion Editorials

The ‘Great Resignation’ is here, MILLIONS are quitting their jobs – what’s going on!?

(BUSINESS NEWS) We’re seeing record numbers of resignations – some are calling it a labor shortage, but it’s a worker’s market as they are in demand. Employers need to rethink their culture and benefits to retain good workers.

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The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported a record number of resignations in April (with the trend continuing in May). Over 2.7% of the workforce, or 4 million people in the United States, quit their jobs.

With millions of workers already out of work following the worst recession in U.S. history, and employers complaining about labor shortages, what’s behind this trend?

You can blame the “Great Resignation” on politics, the extended unemployment benefits, a 600K+ population decrease due to COVID-19, or low wages, but there may be something even more basic behind workers leaving their jobs – economics of supply and demand. Employees are finding better jobs in greener pastures because they have the upper hand.

Labor shortage or realignment?

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Businesses pivoted their services when the pandemic struck. This has carried over to workers.

The hospitality industry practically shut down, giving many workers a chance to redefine their decisions about what industry they worked in. Many restaurants discarded their workers at the beginning of the pandemic. Even though the sector was hard hit and many had no choice but to lay off staff to stay afloat, is it any wonder that those workers do not want to return to places of employment where they felt disposed of, with physical jobs that paid low wages, little-to-no benefits, and harsh conditions?

Employees have the leverage to demand better, so they are taking advantage of that opportunity. Workers are re-examining their work-life balance, their commute, and their happiness.

What can employers do?

Employers would do well to re-examine their culture and to find ways to retain their best employees. Workers want better conditions, regardless of the industry. Essential workers have suffered alongside small business owners.

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It’s not only about wages. It’s about opportunities for growth. It’s about preventing burnout. It’s about not getting penalized for needing a day off when you’re sick. It’s about having sick days to take care of kids or family members. It’s about regular schedules where you can take classes or plan for day care without worrying that you won’t get your 40 hours. It’s about healthcare and retirement benefits.

You can’t expect your workers to be loyal to your business without giving more than a paycheck. Work isn’t just about paying the bills.

People want their work to accommodate their life.

To stem the “Great Resignation,” employers need to wake up to giving their workers respect in meaningful ways, not just telling them they’re lucky to have a job, or adding a ping pong table to the office.

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Dawn Brotherton is a Sr. Staff Writer at The American Genius with an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Central Oklahoma. She is an experienced business writer with over 10 years of experience in SEO and content creation. Since 2017, she has earned $60K+ in grant writing for a local community center, which assists disadvantaged adults in the area.

7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Paul O'Brien

    July 7, 2021 at 10:36 am

    Well let’s see…

    Keep the regulations and costs of starting a business high so that most people must work

    Balloon the price of University education by increasing demand and shaming alternatives so that people are over (or poorly) educated for many jobs while in debt for the privilege

    Lie to people, that it’s not possible nor productive to work remotely, or only 4 day work weeks

    Maintain zoning, mobility, and regulatory policies that artificially maintains higher home prices, forcing people to work to barely maintain a decent standard of living

    Keep a strangle hold on healthcare so that it remains unaffordable; providing employers a ready-made benefit that people would otherwise unlikely be able to have…

    Then, throw us into a circumstance in which it becomes abundantly clear that all of the above is bullshit and fabricated

    This is The Great Resignation, it’s a mini-revolution

  2. Don Don

    July 9, 2021 at 7:44 am

    Let’s see. Your answers are below
    1) Overwhelming the younger generation votes for liberal politicians who promise to regulate businesses
    2) The same politicians have taken money away from public education and diverted it to social programs that pay people not to work. Thus university have to raise tuition and boarding prices to meet their budgets
    3) Work from home as long as you meet your deadlines for deliverables and come to the office when a meeting requires
    4) Listen to what the politicians actually say, not the 5 second sound bite the media shares and see what they actually support and what regulations are on their agendas
    5) Everyone wants free healthcare, but tell me who pays for it? IF you are one of the idiots that advocate a government health care service then look at the lines at the DMV next time. So healthcare is not free. Telling healthcare wake up because there will be a payroll tax to pay for government healthcare instead of a payroll deduction for insurance. And recognize the efficiencies at the DMV as what you are advocating for healthcare. IS that what you want??
    6) The bullshit and fabrication you mention is just your recognition that the liberal crap they feed you in the overpriced university for the bullshit sociology degree does not prepare you for a career or life.
    Conclusion) The mini revolution as you call is (drumroll) Your dumbass finally become an adult and recognizing life is not utopia

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