If you haven’t already, it is time to reflect on how your organization has maneuvered and adapted to all the recent challenges. There has never been a better time to reimagine your workplace culture.
What exactly is this elusive thing called “culture?” According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), “the key to a successful organization is to have a culture based on a strongly held and widely shared set of beliefs that are supported by strategy and structure.”
If you took a random poll of your employees, what would their response be if asked to define their company culture? Ask yourself, how has our culture changed in the last two years following a global pandemic?
Your culture is what makes your company unique. It is the personality and character of your environment. In this most competitive environment, uniqueness is what attracts and retains today’s talent.
Accelerated by COVID-19, talent shortages have moved from concerning to overwhelming. Quit rates surged to an unprecedented 4.4 million in September 2021. In October 2021, there were 11 million unfilled positions with 3.6 million more jobs than candidates. Dubbed “The Great Resignation,” a Korn Ferry survey of nearly 700 professionals found that a third said they would quit their job even if they didn’t have another one. Companies are scrambling to position themselves to rethink, rebrand, reestablish and reimagine what could be.
So, what is a company to do? Where do you start? 2022 brings challenges and opportunities as you revamp your culture in the multifamily sector.
The top 5 emerging trends for 2022 workplace culture reset are:
Embrace Your Talent Within
For the first time in history there are five generations in the workplace. Just think grandparents and grandchildren could be in the same workplace. Are you prepared to meet the challenges of building a culture that attracts and retains this diverse group? Bridging the gap both in skill set and basic communication will be essential. There is a unique opportunity to embrace knowledge transfer and experiences from a multitude of perspectives that have the power to make your culture stronger.
Reskilling and upskilling are methods to build motivation, sustainability and cross functional teams. This internal mobility prevents attrition and aides in solving a talent shortage.
Give yourself a competitive edge while developing through professional development programs. Most employees desire opportunities for advancement and challenge. They feel more valuable and will typically stay with a company longer if these needs are met.
Incentivize externally and internally
Sign on bonuses have become an expectation as candidates turn the tables at the “interview.” Counteroffers are common. Harvard Business School surveys found that 81 percent of employees who have been working from home don’t want to return to the office, making flexible work schedules one of the hottest commodities in 2022. The offering of hybrid work environments creates a competitive playing field as companies work through what that looks like for them.
A simple key to employee engagement is recognition. Creating a culture where employees feel appreciated and productive can be accomplished in a number of many ways from an increased focus on work/life balance to financial wellness incentives.
ADP Research Institute reports that employees who feel strongly connected to their employer are 75 times more likely to be engaged than those who do not. This is where culture plays a big role in retention and attraction. Cultures that foster people-centered programs that include diversity, equity and inclusion are highly sought after.
Employers will need to take a serious deep look at their culture to understand how they align- or not- with candidates and employees whose expectations of transparency and acceptance of feedback surface.
The majority of employees feel good about the future of technology and how it makes their job easier and more efficient. A company that embraces technology and offers training on the newest tools and platforms will attract applicants and retain employees who take their personal and professional development seriously.
Unequivocally, the pandemic has manifested the hybrid work model. As employees and candidates have become accustomed to more flexibility, they are unwilling to give that new found freedom up. As companies work to figure out the best way to embrace and implement more flexibility there results a concern for what is referred to as a two-tiered workplace.
This is starting to emerge when remote employees may not be treated fairly as compared to those who work in the office. A cultural shift will certainly be required with steps taken to ensure that all workers are treated equally and feel connected and included.
When it is all said and done, the importance of a healthy culture is not new. However, it has certainly been shaken up. Building a desirable culture plays a significant role for the success of a company. Leaders should be mindful that a healthy company culture is based on what works for the employees with each workplace being very different from another. Remember, this is not a “one size fits all” and it can ebb and flow as a company grows and changes.
Reflect, reimagine, be a new you!
Robin Stinson, CPM, is the president of operations for The Klotz Group of Companies. She has over a decade of experience in the real estate development, marketing and property/asset management industry. Her portfolios have ranged from high-rise luxury to garden-style affordable housing from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C.