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Tired of disruption of work? Why you shouldn’t be.

Loved this lead on a TechRepublic article – “You may be tired of reading about The Great Resignation and tempted to dismiss this dynamic in the workforce. The bad news is that this isn’t a short-term trend. Three new studies show that burnout is real and workers are acting on their unhappiness.”

Here’s a sampling across that data set.  

  • 28% left without a new job to go to
  • 40% who had a new job chose it because of the ability to work remote 
  • 24% left because the new job offered flexibility in working hours 
  • 22% felt more comfortable disclosing a mental health condition with their new employer 
  • 4 in 10 people have not taken a sick day since they began remote work
  • 41% are working more hours to avoid giving the impression of slacking off
  • 19% are worried that in-person workers are getting more opportunities 

Of course, lets couple that with some other perspective — owners.  . More than one-third of small business owners said they’d fire remote workers who don’t return post-pandemic. More than two-thirds consider remote workers more replaceable, according to a Society for Human Resources Management survey. 

Will AI take away jobs?  Reign looked at sentiments around AI, and found that U.S. AI-related positions increased 21% in the last decade and the average salary surged 27% during this time.  Overall, 54% of respondents were very or moderately concerned about AI “negatively disrupting” their job; across all industries, 36% of respondents believed AI will decrease the total number of positions.  Education matters for that perspective – those with a bachelor’s degree were more than twice as likely to believe that AI will create more jobs in the future.  

Why do we care?

You might be tired of these – tough.   This isn’t a short term thing.   There’s some real disruption going on here.     It’s often difficult to address these in the emotional terms they require.   Employees are making decisions about their lives after the emotional trauma of lockdown.      This is not a pure business problem.

I’ll offer that those business owners drawing entirely on experiences of the past will be the ones who struggle in the future.    Those that adapt will find ways to thrive – but there isn’t a single “answer” to this problem.    Businesses will find new creative options for employees, and will likely partner with them in designing the work style of the future.    

Because that AI impact is there too.     My take on that is that this is all transformational rather than destructive.  It’s just the transformation may have collateral damage for those who don’t plan.