Expectations from employers and employees are rapidly changing. This has led to industry trends, such as the Great Resignation, and high levels of burnout. In our August Zotec Shares, Aimee Harvey, EVP of People and Culture at Zotec Partners, and Nicole Johansen, Performance Coach at 15Five, discuss ways to help align employer and employee expectations.
Read below for more advice from our guests on navigating the changing expectations between employers and employees.
There has been a lot of change in the past few years regarding employer and employee expectations. Can you tell us what specifically is changing in the industry?
On the employer side, most employers expected remote work to be temporary and are now trying to pull workers back into the office. However, now the employee expectation has shifted to wanting to work in a flexible setting. Secondly, employees have a bigger expectation of being cared for and working in a setting where they matter.
How might clinical environments differ from non-clinical environments regarding employer and employee expectations?
The expectations don’t differ. People are people, despite the industry they are in. The difficulty in meeting those expectations is different in a clinical environment, specifically scheduling and flexibility. While a clinical environment can’t have the same flexible schedule as an office setting, employers are still trying to find a way to add more scheduling control for employees.
How has remote work impacted these trends?
The positive is that remote work has allowed employees to live wherever they want while still providing value to their company. It allows organizations to reach a larger talent pool, as they are limited to their office locations. But one challenge employers face is how to recreate “water cooler talk intentionally” and energy while working in a hybrid or remote setting.
What are the differences in expectations between the generations of workers?
We have four generations right now in the workplace, and that has never happened before. The speed at which change occurs in our world also exacerbated the change between these generations. Knowing each generation’s general wants and needs can help you forecast and plan for what you should be offering your employees.
How do organizational purpose and culture fit into the diversity and inclusion of a workplace?
These are all inexplicably linked. The key to diversity and inclusion is encouraging and respecting the views and contributions of every employee, no matter how different they are from your own. Employers want employees to connect with their overall purpose and mission, but this will never happen if each individual is valued and respected.
How do you engage new employee expectations with talent acquisitions?
Be honest. Everyone has felt the impact of labor shortages, so there is motivation to bring new talent on board. But employers have to be honest about their work environment and culture to find a proper match. Let candidates talk to other people in the organization to determine if it is a good fit.
What can employers do about retention?
The first step is matching expectations. There is a lot of turnover in positions where the role isn’t what was advertised. Once expectations are matched, employees will want to stay. Power is shifting from the employer to the employee, which needs to be recognized when identifying expectations.
What are the expectations of leaders, and how is it changing?
Three to five years ago, our expectations of leaders were related to day-to-day functions and inspiring the team. Today, they are expected to have compensation conversations, field social justice issues, and talk with the organization about diversity and inclusion, all on top of productivity and inspiring the team. Organizations need to focus on investing in leadership development for frontline leaders.
What are the top three most important aspects when asking employees for feedback?
The first is transparency, ensuring the employees know the purpose of the feedback and what they will do with it. The second is sharing the data and showing the result of the survey. Lastly, the most important aspect is action. When you ask for feedback, you create an expectation for change. Employers must follow through once they ask for feedback.
What is something unique that has stood out from an employer to drive engagement and satisfaction?
There are several organizations that are taking on the concept of internal interning. This allows individuals to work on a project or a short-term need for a different team. This taps into an employee’s desire to be exposed to different parts of the organization and learn new things. This helps retain talent looking outside the organization for new opportunities. Lastly, it increases the number of voices and perspectives at the table.
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