Speaking Point: Because of the recession, the job market has become extremely competitive. For several years now, the “fortunate” employees whom have kept their jobs have been faced with zero increases in wages, poor leadership, low morale, and in many cases, drastic paycuts. Now that we are experiencing a slow but definitive bounceback in the economy and job availability, many employees are acting on the resentment that has been seething inside them after running through the gauntlet of the worst recession since the Great Depression.
Speaking Point: Gone is the once unbreakable loyalty to the company. Employees are looking for new places to hang their hats. Companies are looking to poach their competitor’s talent. After being forced into submission these past few years, employees are no longer interested in honoring contracts and find themselves more valuable if they take their clients and fellow teams with them to their next destination, often the competitor.
Speaking Point: CareerBuilder and Harris Interactive surveyed more than 2,400 employers and 3,900 workers nationwide from November 15 to December 2, 2010 across industries and company sizes. The survey found 15% of full-time, employed workers are actively seeking a new job. 76% reported that, although they are not actively looking, they would change jobs in 2011 for the right opportunity. That right opportunity could be at the competition. With 76% willing to leave their jobs, this says much about their happiness levels in their current ones. It’s the passive jobseeker that gets scooped up – taking their experience, talent, and often clients, with them.
Speaking Point: Definition of a poachable employee: Bruce Hurwitz, president and CEO of Hurwitz Strategic Staffing, Ltd. located in NYC, adds: “They stay for at least five years with their employers. They are always advancing in their careers. They will be hard for their present employers to replace. They are not looking for a new job but will consider a position that sounds intriguing.”
Speaking Point: This action of poaching from your competition, and thus also being poached, was once frowned upon and deemed an unethical business practice. However, after a difficult recession, employees feel quite justified in their actions. From their viewpoint, their company has not been good to them, so for what reason should they be good to their company? Why not go somewhere that will reward them? And why not take their valuables with them?
Speaking Point: The Southern California job market is extremely cutthroat and competitive. If you want to get into the film industry, it is no secret that LA is the place to go. With thousands vying for a tedious assistant job at one of the many talent agencies, it’s all about whom you know, and what (and who) you can provide for them. Even these low-paid positions are impossible to get because they are the gatekeepers to Tinseltown. The most difficult part is getting your foot in the door and they made it through the gauntlet. What did they do to get there? Who did they know? What did they bring with them?
Speaking Point: Thus, it comes as no surprise that when potential employees are vying for a new position, and corporations are looking for the best candidate, it is very common for both personal and business ethics to be pushed aside. In Southern California, already a very competitive job market with the lure and desire of Tinseltown, competition is fierce. Companies want the candidate that can bring the most to the table.
Speaking Point: How do you stop employees from breaching company loyalties and instead, honoring covenants made in good faith? Ideally, it begins with treating your employees well. Reward them for a job well done with positive feedback and merit increases where applicable. Most importantly, do not give people a reason to leave. Give your best people a reason to stay - at your company with your clients. Under normal circumstances, these are your best employees. But during these times, even the best employees feel justified to get the most out of a situation, to right a perceived wrong, and to take care of number one.