The Great Reshuffle, also known as the Great Resignation, is the ongoing trend present over the last two years in which people have voluntarily quit their jobs to pursue what they believe to be better opportunities – whether they be financial, lifestyle-related, or career development motivated. New factors for job seekers that came out of the pandemic, like the opportunity to work remotely, or concerns around job stability because of economic uncertainty, are driving the Great Reshuffle. This phenomenon has resulted in unique challenges for organizations regarding hiring and retaining top talent. Let’s look at the current employment landscape. 

The Great Reshuffle is showing no signs of slowing. According to an ADP survey, as many as 70% of global employees have contemplated a major career move this year. People are leaving their jobs for roles that offer better work-life balance, pay, management, or a greater sense of purpose, while employers scramble to replace those who have left. 

People have more options around where and when they work. New hybrid and remote work options now put a large part of the workforce in a position of power. Many job seekers are no longer limited by their geographic location or proximity to an office. For this reason, organizations are seeing increased pressure on human capital and now have to compete globally to attract and retain talent. 

Employees want opportunities for advancement. The lack of career growth and development opportunities was one of the top reasons employees gave for leaving their roles in 2021. It’s critical for organizations to prioritize ongoing learning and career development opportunities for their employees in order to keep them satisfied in their roles and prevent them from looking for a new one elsewhere.  

There’s widespread economic uncertainty. The Washington Post reported earlier this year that, “Big Tech is bracing for an economic recession and an uncertain future,” citing news of layoffs, slowing venture capital investments, and hiring freezes in Silicon Valley. This economic uncertainty means it will likely be more difficult to acquire top talent and skilled leaders who can help companies meet the challenges that may arise.

The importance of developing strong leaders during unprecedented times

One thing that can make or break an organization’s hiring success during this time is whether or not they have skilled, developed leaders. According to Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace: 2022 Report, managers need to be better listeners, coaches, and collaborators. Great managers help colleagues learn and grow, recognize their colleagues for doing great work, and make them truly feel cared about. However, because the talent market is so competitive and uncertain right now, hiring skilled leaders is especially difficult. Developing the skills and effectiveness of existing leaders within a company is now taking on new urgency. Here are important things to consider when it comes to leadership development programs:

Ease hiring burdens with talent mobility programs. “Build” rather than “buy” the talent your organization will need. Research from SmartRecruiters found that giving an employee a different role or new responsibilities improved the “likelihood of retaining a top performer over a three-year period by around 20%.” 

Leaders require different skills today than they did before. According to DDI’s Global Leadership Forecast 2021, these are the must-have skills for today’s leaders: 

All of these skills can be learned through structured leadership development programs. By developing the high-performing employees you already have into skilled leaders, you build a consistent leadership pipeline, reduce the risk and cost of hiring new employees who are poor culture fits, and expedite onboarding times.

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) face unique challenges. Milton Corsey, Director of Human Capital Solutions at AchieveNEXT, writes in Harvard Business Review that when it comes to leadership development, SMBs can take steps like designing a program to address urgent challenges, focusing on scaling and not just growing, and training leaders in the real world as well as the classroom.

Companies that make it a priority to invest in their leaders achieve significant benefits. This is especially true during the great reshuffle. Download the ebook Leadership Development as a Strategic Advantage to discover best practices for effective leadership development programs.