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Shifting Focus From Turnover To Talent

Updated: Mar 30

Picture your local hospital. Think about the people who work there and the work they do. What would happen if that hospital closed? What if the health clinics closed and there were no medical professionals left in your community either? Can you imagine your community without access to any healthcare whatsoever? 

As ominous or unlikely as this may sound, it’s a very real possibility without talent.

Turnover has long been cited as a concern among hospitals – even before the pandemic hit. Since 2016, the average hospital has had a 90 percent turnover of its workforce. Ninety percent! 

Unfortunately, healthcare isn’t the only industry challenged with turnover right now. It’s apparent in every industry and every country and the situation is getting worse. In fact, workforce retention has been cited as a chief global concern by the United Nations. 

Why is this happening? 

Because there aren’t enough young workers to replace the retiring workers or to move into entry-level roles. 

Wait—let me rephrase that. There are enough young workers, but they don’t want to work in the same jobs, doing the same type of work, answering to the same types of leaders, in the same organizational cultures as their predecessors. And when an organization can’t engage the talent it needs, the results can be dire. 

Right now, everyone is talking about the Great Resignation. Before that, it was the Silver Tsunami and before that the Talent War. Whatever you want to call it, the workforce crisis – characterized by increasing difficulty to find or keep employees — isn’t due to a lack of smart, ambitious, innovative people. Rather, it’s a crisis that leaders could solve themselves because the crisis stems from organizations and their cultures. 

Simply stated, the workforce crisis is the result of an ever-widening gap between the Industrial Era 20th century-managed organizations, and the Post Industrial 21st century-raised workforce. 

Remember when the pandemic hit and organizations were forced to use Zoom? The majority of young workers transitioned seamlessly and were excited to make the shift. But for the majority of experienced workers, it was an incredibly awkward, unwelcome transition. After the initial shock subsided, these individuals began to realize just how resistant they had been to the adoption of online technology, remote work, and virtual events. 

This is a perfect example to draw upon because it highlights just one of the many reasons why Industrial Era-thinking organizations are struggling to recruit and retain a Post-Industrial-raised workforce. There are gaps between what people value and want and expect the work experience to be like.

This tug-of-war between Industrial Era and Post-Industrial Era expectations and management practices is prominent in our workplaces, causing employee turnover to accelerate. Regrettably, many leaders fail to recognize the real reason for the turnover, placing blame and making accusations. 

How many times have you heard someone say the work ethic of ‘kids these days’ is the cause of the turnover? Or proclaim that young people ‘don’t like to work’?  

The workforce crisis isn’t the result of a character flaw or due to the sudden lack of smart, ambitious, innovative people. The workforce crisis is the result of organizations failing to keep pace with change and lacking the structure, strategy, and culture to manage employees effectively in the 21st century. 

It’s time to stop the turnover. It’s time to realize work isn’t working, and we aren’t being inclusive when we hold on to the traditions of the past. We must find our way forward. Together. I’ll show you how. In the next six weeks, I’m going to show you how to reverse the turnover trend and engage talent. My research has proven there are specific traits – six, to be exact – common among organizations with the highest productivity, profitability, and employee engagement. Check back to learn how to implement each of these six traits in your own organization and make work work again.

Is it time to give your organization an update? We can help with professional solutions for productivity, collaboration and retention.


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