Tuesday, January 31, 2023

How the GREAT RESIGNATION is YOUR Opportunity to Grow

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4 million Americans quit their jobs in July 2021.Those numbers continue to fluctuate in 2022, with a record number of Americans leaving the market, holding out for what they believe to be better opportunities.

Those employees between 30 and 45 years old have had the greatest increase in resignation rates, with an average increase of more than 20% between 2020 and 2021.


From what some of the exit interviews have revealed, the great resignation is a great search for true mission, purpose, and identity.

Fortunately, there are millions of job openings for those who are truly looking to find the best fit. Yet, HR and potential employees seem to be at a loss on how to identify finding the right “fit.”

According to the latest Gallup report, 51% of employees are disengaged in the workplace, while 13% are actively disengaged.

Actively disengaged means feeling miserable at work and spreading negativity to their colleagues.

The combination of those resigning, those who are disengaged, and those who are actively looking but not committing or not being selected is causing issuesin production, logistics, and staffing which is ultimately driving up costs and frustrations across the country.

So, the real question is, how do you find the “best-fit,” from both an HR perspective and an employee perspective while avoiding getting seduced into hiring the wrong person or taking a job that seems like it is the miracle cure that wears off after three months?

You incorporate The Rule of Five.

The Rule of Five was birthed out of a conversation I had with one of my first business partners back in the early 2000s. We were sitting at a coffee shop discussing his interest in my company (a software start-up at the time), and as we looked over the possibilities, he stopped me and said, “well – let me give you five reasons why I think we should do business together.”

That floored me. Here was the investor selling me on why we should do business together. But what changed our relationship forever – in a good way – was what he said next. After he shared his five reasons why we should do business together, he followed that up with the five reasons why I might not want to do business with him.

It was those five reasons why NOT to do business that changed everything. It was so transparent and refreshing – and also revealing – that I incorporated that method into every project I take on today. And having worked with hundreds of HR directors over the past ten years, when they incorporate this methodology, it changes the workplace for the better. The same holds true for those who are interviewing for positions.

So, here’s how you can make it work for you:

Step 1: With any candidate or job opportunity, first be clear on what problem the candidate will solve for you or what problem you will solve for the company.

Seems like common sense, but too often many candidates and hiring managers get enamored by the opportunity to work together that they overlook how the match will align with desired outcomes.

Step 2: Would you enjoy working with the individual or doing the work? (This is where the Rule of Five comes in)

Before I dive into the Rule of Five, this point of “enjoyment” is critical. The workplace thrives on teamwork – and when the team is at odds with each other, productivity, and morale drop – and with that, profits.

Step 3: Does this job align with your work/life balance?

Step 3 really is for the job candidate. If this step is overlooked, this is when turnover happens – which costs everyone involved.

So, the Rule of Five. Step 2 is when this methodology comes into play.

First, write down the five areas you’ll add value or have the skills to take on the project successfully. If you are the hiring manager, be clear on where and how the candidate will add value.  Secondly, follow those five positive values/attributes with the five reasons you should walk away from the project, or the candidate may not be a good fit.

From a candidate perspective, it could be that the project doesn’t align with your values, or it requires too much travel, or it doesn’t pay what you want – all these are negotiable. But if you can’t move the needle on your five reasons to walk away, then do exactly that: walk.

Same goes from a hiring perspective. Know the five reasons the candidate may not be a good candidate – but move those to discussion points with the candidate and gain clarity. Don’t be too quick to discount a candidate because of perception or uncertainty. Have the discussion.

Life is too short to waste your time, talent, and energy being miserable. So, use this great resignation as an opportunity to find your best-fit. When you do, you’ll change your world.

Mike is a US Navy Veteran, CEO of Operation Military Family and The VUCA Principle, LLC. He has been featured on Yahoo Finance, the Boston Globe, NY Post, USA Today, Q13 Fox, and numerous other media outlets discussing why today’s Veterans are truly one of America’s Greatest Assets. He has interviewed and worked with over 100 HR directors and numerous companies to improve the workplace. Mike is also the co-executive producer of IT’S VUCA: The Secret to Living in the 21st Century documentary, and the author of two highly endorsed books, “Operation Military Family: How Military Couples are Fighting to Preserve their Marriages and “U.S. Veterans in the Workforce: Why the 7% are America’s Greatest Asset.”