We are Emerging

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By Melissa Davies, Wise Ways Consulting

Last month I mentioned that the cicadas, like us as community, were coming out of a long hibernation. Well, now they are roaring in the trees. This coincides with longer, warmer days, COVID vaccines, and the unstoppable desire to be anywhere that isn’t here.

It feels like we too, can roar again, no longer confined inside. Please get a COVID vaccine if you are able. Every jab makes us all safer.

Coupled with a return to life outside, is a great deal of talk of return to work, specifically in-person office work. However, not everyone wants to return to work. In fact, a recent Prudential work place study reported that 87% of people who have been working remotely want to stay remote.

“According to the survey, 42% of current remote workers say if their current company does not continue to offer remote work options long term, they will look for a job at a company that does.”

Why is this happening? 

The desire to work from home is fueled by more than the sweat pants dress code. For some workers, yes, it’s lifestyle and the ability to trade a commute for family time, flexible childcare, living where they want instead of where the employer lives.

For others, it’s job growth and satisfaction. There weren’t a high number of promotions or opportunities during quarantine as many were thankful to have a job. Asking for a raise or promotion seemed strange so for many, it was off the table. Many companies weren’t able to adapt their company culture online. Now there are legions of workers who no longer feel appreciated or experience a sense of belonging. They are ready for a change.

HR professionals are predicting a talent migration and a war for talent as the most skilled workers leave their jobs, creating a high demand to fill those empty positions.

Workers in the DMV are not immune to this trend. However, as many work in the federal workforce or for consulting firms that support the federal government, the culture is different. Last week, the Biden administration announced that remote working guidelines would be coming later in June. The federal government employs 2.1 million workers and 59% of them were remote at the height of the pandemic. Experts anticipate that the Biden administration will recommend flexible work to continue. Of course, this will be looked at Agency by Agency. But whereas the feds have often lagged in workplace trends, they may now be leading an employee cultural evolution.

Like the cicadas, are you ready to roar to a new opportunity?  Consider your professional and post-COVID lifestyle needs.

  • Do you value flexible and remote work and will your current employer honor that?
  • Are there opportunities in your current job or do you need to move on to find them?
  • Have you been satisfied with the support and guidance your employer provided during the pandemic?
  • Are you making enough salary to support your needs and your savings?
  • Does your company offer comprehensive benefits?
  • Do you want to continue to live in Northern Virginia?

 

It never hurts to have an updated resume and to see what’s available at a dream employer. If you’re a manager worried about losing your best people, check out the Prudential survey and see what changes you can make now before it’s too late.

 

Melissa Davies is an executive leadership coach and facilitator as well as the author of How Not to Act Like a BLEEP at Work.  She resides in Prince William County and runs Wise Ways Consulting, which specializes in leadership, management and team development, executive coaching, group facilitation and high-engagement training.  She can be reached at info@wisewaysconsulting.com or through wisewaysconsulting.com.

 

 

 

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