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Don't Give In to the Great Resignation

Updated: Mar 6, 2023

If there’s one phrase we’ve heard too often in the past year of this pandemic (aside from “unprecedented times”) it’s “The Great Resignation,” the title given by economists to the trend of talented workers leaving unsatisfying jobs in massive, historic numbers. Harried HR departments in several countries have tried to suss out precisely why. Is the pay too low? Is everyone just burnt out? Are entire industries dying out? All of the above? Burnout is certainly a huge factor. A recent poll from insolvency trustees Bronwich+Smith, conducted by Angus Reid, found that 48 percent of workers were feeling more stressed about returning to work in January 2022 than they’d been at the beginning of lockdowns in March 2020. 70 percent were worried about their physical and mental health. A December 2021 study by Mental Health Research Canada revealed that only a third of respondents felt their company is committed to lowering stress in their work environment. "We're troubled about the many respondents who singled out the lack of psychological supports at work," said Michael Cooper, MHRC Vice-President, "With the pandemic, it's more important than ever for employers to consider new leadership approaches to help those employees most at risk of burnout. The consequences of not doing so are significant."

While the highest rates of stress and burnout were reported among healthcare workers, for obvious reasons, these polls revealed that the pain is not being endured equally among all groups. Younger workers were doubly concerned about cost-of-living increases and lack of savings than older Canadians, while Black and Indigenous workers reported higher stress rates than white ones. A 2019 Environics study of race relations in Canada found that 40 percent of those who experienced racism told the pollsters it occurred at work. Bloomberg News reporter Kelsey Butler agrees, reporting in May 2021 that, “before the pandemic, studies found Black employees were more likely to leave their workplaces than white ones, and were more likely to say they don’t feel respected or valued. The stresses of the last year have only made things worse.” Fortunately, the ability to work from home has proved to ease the burden for a lot of people, with long-awaited accommodations and new “hybrid” workstyles proving a better fit. The old axiom “people don’t quit bad jobs, they quit bad managers” has proven to be absolutely true under COVID. “The Great Resignation” has been driven far more by workplace culture than by money. Workplace culture can be measured in specific, quantifiable ways, thanks to Breakfast Culture’s partnership with Prompta AI and our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion audits. With a structured, proven, five-phase process, an audit will provide your company with Employee Engagement Survey Results, Leadership Strategy Sessions and a Final Report of recommendations that will help your organization retain its great people and build a better culture of inclusion and growth. Talk to us about slowing even a Minor Resignation and Let’s Break Some Eggs! Founder and CEO Jefferson Darrell is happy to jump on a call to discuss how Breakfast Culture can help with your organizational diversity and inclusion journey. Schedule a 30-minute meeting today: Create a great day! – Scott Dagostino, JEDI Consultant

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