Leaders Need to Learn How to Care—and Show It

The Great Resignation has generated new trends in employment, most of which have involved throwing money at workers to make them stay or to lure them in. For the first time in decades, hourly workers are incentivized with signing bonuses, which were previously only used for knowledge-worker and executive recruiting until recently. This author has seen as much as $8,000 being used as a carrot for just one hourly worker in the manufacturing industry. A pair of truckers were offered a $30,000 signing bonus in another instance. Based on a pandemic-timed Glassdoor survey that uncovered the real reasons why people leave jobs, money is not the answer. The survey revealed that “disrespect” was the No. 1 reason employees leave. Of course, what is viewed as disrespect is in the eye of the beholder, so what can employers do that means something to employees? They need to learn how to care and show it. Though most humans intrinsically care about one another, the industrial revolution viewed workers as human capital, and 200 years later, not a lot about that has changed. Most of the innovation in manufacturing has occurred on the plant floors but missed the HR department, which manages the most valuable thing in an organization: people. 

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