Friday, November 28, 2003

Sorry Scrooge Gotta Go

I feel the rumbling. In the last two weeks, I've had three experiences where I noticed a "new hire" -- someone was training a new employee or a person told me it was their "first day."

Employers are about to lose a lot of "loyal" employees who have been sticking around through the bad economy, but are more than ready to jump ship as the job market snaps back.

Business Week wrote about this in October, but I think it's coming on even stronger now. BW suggests employers are in for a rude awakening:

"It has been three long years of doubled-up workloads, minuscule raises, and ungrateful bosses -- and American workers are fed up. In the late 1990s, when even modest performers could drum up multiple job offers, such treatment would have led to a mass exodus. Today, it has many workers quietly updating their résumés and biding their time.

After three rounds of layoffs in three years at her magazine, one New York editor says she's now pulling all-nighters every other week. With an out-of-work husband, she can't afford to quit, but she'll depart as soon as hiring picks up. "You feel grateful for having a job, but because of downsizing I'm doing two other people's jobs," she says. "It has just been hugely stressful."

How many people are in the same boat? Sibson Consulting says one out of six is ready to bolt. Walker Information says its survey of 2,400 employees found that 34% were at high risk for departure. And Accenture says half of all U.S. middle managers are actively looking for new jobs or will be soon. The bottom line: After years of cracking the whip, employers who want to win the coming war for talent need to start giving their troops a compelling reason to stay."