Is your company is asking you to return to the office, and you’re thinking, “I don’t know if I want to go back to work in the office? I don’t want to deal with the commute again and not being able to be home and take care of my life.” You’re probably thinking, “I’d rather quit than go back.”
You’re not the only one.
What is The Great Resignation?
A professor at Texas A&M, Anthony Klotz, predicts that when companies call people back to the office, we’ll see a trend of workers quitting their jobs rather than complying. This trend is The Great Resignation.
People don’t want to deal with the commute and all the stuff that comes with working in the office. They like the flexibility of working from home. They’re still getting their job done, so what difference does it make where they work?
The Great Resignation and the future of (your) work
One significant factor motivating the Great Resignation is that people are tired and have talked about this for a long time. They feel like, “You know what? I need a change.” And this has been going on even before the pandemic. COVID-19 was just the tipping point.
So, we’re going to see a boomerang happen. Some people will leave their jobs, and then they’ll realize, “Oh, I liked my old company. I want to go back.”
Another big trend I can see happening is massive shifts in expectations around work hours in the office. At first, some people will return. It’s easier than looking for another job.
But over time, they’ll realize they can’t handle the commute anymore. Life has changed too much. And it’ll make some companies see that if they are more flexible with people’s hours and allow them to work remotely, they can keep their talent and attract a new one. So we’re going to see a second wave later on.
But what does The Great Resignation mean for you as an individual? And for your career?
As the months go by and we talk about a ‘new normal’, what does ‘new normal’ mean to you? What are your boundaries? That’s something for you to consider, as it’ll have a lot of impact on your life and career.
Here are a few things to consider:
Look after your personal brand
The first thing you want to do to manage your career well is to get clear about your personal brand. It is the foundation of things. From there, you can start making some choices about whether you want to resign.
Ignore company gossip
Another trend Professor Klotz has noticed is that the company’s key players and top performers will set the pace for what happens in the rest of the company. If they plan to resign, it will make others follow along.
But company gossip isn’t the best way to make your decisions.
Regardless of what the top players in your company are planning, what matters is what you will do.
That would be my question for you — Why have you decided to stay or to go? How does that decision fit into your career goals? Your personal life? Your finances?
What if you’re a leader? The one getting the emails from people saying it’s either work from home or resignation?
If you’re in that situation, maybe it’s time to take a pause. Look at your team’s performance in the last few months — the actual results. If they’ve proven to work from home successfully, does it make sense to push everybody to come back to the office full-time and risk losing people? Would it be more beneficial to offer flexibility, with each worker choosing their location?