Flashback to November 2019. Many of us were going about our usual routines …year-end closing duties at work, holiday shopping extravaganzas, and social gatherings with friends and family. Little did we know just a few short months later, we – the world – would be in the midst of a global pandemic that ultimately would upend our every sense of normalcy.

As this year’s holiday season approaches, we cannot help but reflect on all that we have gone through together. As we slowly emerge, albeit a bit battered and bruised emotionally (and more) from the turmoil Covid-19 thrust upon us, it may at times seem we have stepped into another universe, an alternate reality – the world we knew looks different, feels different, we are different.

As we look into 2022, leaders everywhere should be asking themselves one question: ‘How do we stay competitive in this new world of work post-Covid?’ The details here may vary, but at the core the focus should be on creating an adaptable, people-centric organization. If you want a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting and retaining talent, make sure you have adaptability and people at the top of your 2022 strategic plans. Here is why…

An Adaptable Organization Is Ready for Anything

The world of work has undergone one of the most significant evolutions during the pandemic. Before the pandemic, we consulted with many clients who were, at times, resistant about remote work – thinking it could never work in theirenvironment. Well, necessity breeds invention they say – and Covid-19 forced it upon us. And you know what? We made it work. Not always pretty, but it worked – and we kept adapting, making it better and opening new doors of creativity and flexibility never seen before is some organizations. And employees took notice that being strapped in a cubicle was not necessary for them to be an asset. Why does that matter as the future of work unfolds? Consider this – In a recent study:

  • 77% of respondents agree that after the pandemic ends, being able to work from home would make them happier.
  • 1 in 2 people do not plan to return to jobs that do not offer remote work.
  • 1 in 2 people would move if they were able to work from home all or most of the time.
  • 80% expect to work from home at least 3 times a week.

Furthermore, a report out by McKinsey & Company, revealed:

  • Even after vaccines are fully rolled out, 22% of U.S. jobs could be done remotely for 3-5 days a week, 17% for 1-3 days a week, and the remaining 61% of jobs could be done remotely for 1 day a week without loss of productivity.
  • 72% of executives say that their organizations have started adopting permanent remote-working models.
  • 70% of employees say that being able to work from home for at least part of the week is a top criterion in choosing their next job.

Offering remote working (in whatever capacity that looks like for you) not only will enable you to attract the top talent in your area, but the sky is the limit on where you can source and recruit. Changing perspective on how employees work and where they sit will give you a strong advantage as the future of work continues to evolve.

The People-Centric Organization Will Keep The Best Talent

Organizations post-Covid are shifting their focus from work-experience to the employee’s life-experience. For example, flexible work schedules, childcare support and reimbursement, flexible PTO, forward-thinking technology, and increased access to mental health resources are becoming the norm (not just perks). Employees want to work for companies like this. And they are less likely to jump ship, which is a real concern for organizations everywhere today. According to a recent report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistic:

  • Resignations peaked in July 2021 with 4 million Americans quitting their jobs in July.
  • 52% of people plan to look for a new job in 2021.

The Great Resignation” is upon us. The time during the lockdowns and layoffs gave people time to rethink their priorities, to pause, and to reflect on how they want to live their lives – and what, where and how they work is at the top of list. Employees everywhere came back to the table ready and pushing for change.

Not surprisingly, companies who before the pandemic embraced these offerings didn’t miss a beat. But the good news is it is not too late to catch up. Implementing a people-first, adaptable organizational strategy is within reach. One in which your leaders thrive, your people thrive, and your organization is poised with a major competitive advantage for talent in the years ahead.

Looking for ideas on how to lead your organization into the future? Check out our website to learn more about LEADING THE BUSINESS – East Tenth Group. If your organization is looking for a new perspective, I encourage you to contact my team and I  at East Tenth Group today.