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#TheGreatResignation

I have been talking about what has now been coined the #greatresignation for over a year now.

I felt it mid last year, a shift from the adrenal RUSH toward the top, re-focussing to the navel-gazed murmur of ‘why am I bothering?” 

It was the echo of thousands in my network, and as evidenced by the trending hashtag, millions across the world!

I’m thrilled and excited that so many people are pushing back on the “bigger, faster & more” narrative we have been fed as the recipe to success for so long! But it finally seems we are waking up to a more holistic approach to life!

I can’t help but feel a little sorry for the corporations who are clearly out of touch

 

Those corporations are about to lose their greatest asset – their talent! 

They were the ones with the CEOs we could hear collectively hand-wringing with excitement at a rise in productivity and decrease in churn when Covid hit.

Word pushed down from the top…

“They will all be grateful just to have a job!” 

 

That attitude, I can only assume, is what led to truly short-sighted actions like that of the NSW Council that informed their working parents they were NOT to home-school while they were on the clock, despite them being in mandated lockdown (nice one Bayside Council!) 

No wonder 50% of the workforce is looking to quit, and are now being counted in, what I’d like to introduce as a new metric “the Unfulfillment rate”!

The Unfulfillment Rate

In the past month alone there have been over 13 articles addressing what Anthony Klotz, a psychologist and professor at Texas A&M, coined as ‘the Great Resignation’. 

As it turns out, it’s not just that we had time to think about what more there was to life, or what our unique contribution was going to be. It was a perfect storm of discontent that was already brewing…Covid just accelerated it.

According to McKinsey’s  COVID-19 and the employee experience: How leaders can seize the moment” article of last year, one of the areas for greatest potential improvement was an organization strongly connecting their actions to purpose. Two thirds of McKinsey’s survey respondents said their organisation does not do this well. 

With all that navel-gazing time over the past few years, and the reported mass ‘spiritual awakening’, people are searching for more…or at least ‘different’.

To be clear, there are a few factors at play here. The stats quoted everywhere show a huge 40-50% resignation rate, but in fact only 3% of them are actually retiring. Many may be starting a business, but certainly not all! 

So that means all is not lost for every corporation, because the rest of them are looking for more fulfilling work in line with their values. And that job could very well be in YOUR corporation – as long as you address what is important to them!

Talent want Purpose

Now more than ever, employers have the opportunity to help their talent ‘live their purpose’ through their employment. And it will pay off for everyone, according to McKinsey, because when employees find their work purposeful, (and the company values purposeful) they are much more likely to “sustain or improve their levels of work effectiveness, and they have four times higher engagement and five times higher well-being.” (McKinsey June 29, 2020 )

Yet for so many people, what their purpose actually is, can be an elusive concept! And C-suite executives steering the ship are certainly not immune to their own personal purpose calamity! So with everyone searching for more, and a good percentage not really sure what “more” actually is, how do we create alignment between the corporation’s values and the talent’s purpose? 

… it can’t be just a feeling or idea

It starts with everyone not just FEELING inside them what their purpose and values are, but being sure of them. And then being able to articulate them, and market them in every interaction. That’s what creates opportunities to be noticed or make change. (We did it as babies – articulating our needs – there was no such thing as silent, resentful crying back then!)

As it turns out there are MANY corporations out there who really do care about their people, their purpose and doing good. (And of course, then there are the ‘Bayside Councils’ of the world!!)

It’s all too easy to blame our dissatisfaction on the corporate culture, but if this pandemic has taught us anything, it is to take responsibility for ourselves and our needs!

…you need to articulate your Unique Contribution

As an employee, if you cannot explain what drives you, and how your unique contribution will positively impact the organisation, then you are likely to be bound as a cog in a wheel – or if the stats are anything to go by, you might just quit with no plan!

And corporations, if you can’t articulate your values and purpose to attract aligned talent, then you have a colossal problem on your hands… Because employees have had enough!

…welcome to the #greatalignment!

 

 

References:

  • https://apple.news/AO9GcFhixRMyl_rJ2rnbVVA
  • https://www.businessinsider.com.au/why-everyone-is-quitting-great-resignation-psychologist-pandemic-rethink-life-2021-10
  • https://www.businessinsider.com.au/how-covid-changes-remote-work-housing-entertainment-fashion-flexible-economy-2021-7
  • https://www.forbes.com/sites/avivahwittenbergcox/2021/11/16/the-great-resignationactually-a-mass-retirement/?sh=31dacdc318ba
  • https://www.theversemedia.com/articles/anthony-klotz-defining-the-great-resignation
  • https://www.abc.net.au/triplej/programs/hack/making-the-great-resignation-work-for-you/13615106
  • https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/people-and-organizational-performance/our-insights/covid-19-and-the-employee-experience-how-leaders-can-seize-the-moment

@A_WittenbergCox, @csreinicke, @andrea_c_hsu, @SteveAndriole, @kendraguidolin, @tylerakern, @ShawnDBaldwin, @shalailah, @JimenaZubiria, @jmmoran12, @MeredithMetsker, @ranimolla, @WIRED

We recently took ourselves through a self-guided rebrand (given that I’m a brand strategist!) 

We enlisted the amazing skills of FlySocial’s David Lee Schneider to help bounce our website design, program design, and social media process off! It is nigh on impossible to do this for yourself even if that’s what other people pay you to do!

I have to say I am AMPED with the results!

 

We have had loads of insanely good feedback, and the copy really speaks to the ideal client now! 

The reason we decided to rebrand was quite simple we had grown.

It was like our audience wasn’t resonating anymore but our offering hadn’t changed.

At the time I was thinking it was because there were other amazing agencies on the market, and coaches, but I realised it was a lot more detailed than that, and wasn’t actually that at all!

We really embraced the change of direction from being a digital marketing agency, to really honing in on our ideal client, (who despite me thinking we had it right – it wasn’t! – Again weird that I can show my clients how far off the mark they are but not myself!)

The new brand has launched us into a whole new stratosphere that we are thrilled to be playing in!

So how did we do it?

 

1. I built a new audience.

 I transitioned my socials (actually I had done that courageously already in a leap of faith earlier in the year) to start only really talking about what I want to be doing not what I had been spruiking. So the socials became more about Magic and Edge, and less about digital marketing hacks and Facebook ads.

2. We went through a case study process.

This is where we took on a few entirely different clients for a minimal fee to test our new brand and offering. That helped in two ways – 1/ it helped me get over my ‘imposter syndrome’ of targeting corporates even though I didn’t have loads of experience with the industry. And 2/ it made me realise that it’s not the marketing people are buying from me! (more on that in a minute!)

3. We reengaged the existing list around the new idea.

It was so interesting because as soon as we started marketing the fact that I was no longer necessarily just a Marketer, but that I help find people’s Unique Contribution, and then create an edgy profile, or business brand, from that, many of my previous clients started to email me back!

Their response was basically “AHHH you’re finally selling what you actually DO, rather than what you think we want!” 

In fact so much so that someone I had worked with in 2016 had the courage to email me and say “I just got invited to be a part of your FB group, and I have to say, when we first met you rocked my world with some copy you whipped up on our first phone call, for my coaching program. I was so in awe of it I signed up for your annual program. Then I met your marketing manager, and I felt disgruntled. It’s now clear why. I bought your magic, not your marketing! I bought YOU and I got her!”

That was SO revealing (let alone AMAZING that she had the courage to tell me and I had the courage not to freak out that I had upset her!).

It gave me buoyancy to know this new rebrand and direction is EXACTLY where I need to be!

4. We gathered testimonials for our new website & socials.

From the case study program we immediately got the most profound of testimonials from MUCH higher-level clients (I’m talking COO of £80 million Investment company in the UK, as well a University Lecturer & Fellow in New Zealand.) Before then I was working with struggling start-ups who just didn’t need this level of magic yet! They just wanted me to do their marketing and make their side hustle work!

5. We rebuilt the website & offer.

With all these exciting decentralised platforms creating so much opportunity for banking, politics, and the arts, as well as innovative science that has the ability to WAKE UP and create fulfillment for so many people… I’m filled with hope.

 

I proved something to myself.

So it turns out through the rebranding process (using my new offering of the Leadership Alchemy) we really solidified and proved the hypothesis that I am indeed a Magician, not a Marketer!

 

Personal reflections only – not necessarily fact, and you don’t have to agree – merely food for the hopeful soul.

 

I have known for a while now, thanks to some incredible energetic work I do with my coach Grace Ambrook, that we were at a tipping point. About 3 years ago (Feb 2018) I did a meditation immersion with her (not drug-induced!).  I had a vision of a Petrie dish, with all these little cells sticking together in a structure.

In the vision, the cells began to break away from each other. Occasionally they would bump into each other, support or transform each other, but it was generous sharing, not ownership. It felt like I was witnessing whole and complete love in action.

When I emerged from the meditative state, Grace and I debriefed on my vision. She shared an insight that we were at the start of an awakening, where the power structures that have ruled the world were starting to crumble.

And here we are in 2021, watching it unfold at a rapid rate before our eyes.

There is much to have hope about right now.

 

Let me walk you through what I see.

But first, let me address what we’ve been experiencing.

We have a climate problem. The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report states that if we can’t limit the rise in temperatures to 1.5c (we are already at 1c), global warming poses a grave risk to humanity.

In the context of Australia, where I live, we are already seeing more and longer-lasting intense heatwaves, harsher droughts, coastal flooding and longer, more dangerous bushfire seasons.

Now we have a pandemic.

Science is moving faster than ever to keep humanity from the near and present danger of a mass global death toll.

Humanity is waking up to our mortality as a species, with something that hits them at home, right between the eyes – their own health and that of their families.

 

We are waking up…

 

While they wake up, there is anger, fear, mistrust, and judgment being flung from groups that before may have laid complacent. But equally, people are encouraging each other to be more understanding, loving, and empathic.

More and more people are researching for their own health interests, rather than outsourcing the responsibility to others.  Spurred on by questions over the impacts of the vaccine on themselves, and society, in the form of mutations, selection pressure – what it means for now, what it means for the future.

We are left with more questions than answers at the moment. But, we are learning. Learning to take responsibility for ourselves and each other, because right now no one can truly say they can save us!

and that’s where my hope springs from.

 

Before now, many left the problem solving to ‘experts’ – people who, through their own passion and sense of duty, dedicated their lives to what they believe in.

Scientists, Activists, Religious Leaders, Teachers, Philosophers, Politicians, Artists.

As a society, we got busy outsourcing the responsibility of our health, culture, and the very survival of humanity, to those who actually gave a shit. Just so the rest of us could go on taking medication, drinking booze, buying shit and chucking it out!

The great news for us is that while we all sat complacently taking our hand out, they were working.

They were at work…

 

They were tying themselves to trees in old-growth forests, where the mycelium network probably holds the answer to future vaccines of future pandemics (I HIGHLY RECOMMEND watching Fantastic Funghi on Netflix).

They were lobbying (and winning over) governments to permit (and fund) the controlled studies of experimental psychedelics, formulating treatments for the rising tide of mental health, cancer and autoimmune disorders that are threatening to swamp us.  (Australia has just recently funded pilot studies too!)

People like Charles Hoskinson were writing white papers to create the Cardano (an open platform, decentralised) blockchain so that it might become more accessible to the general public.

Blockchain has the potential to let artists OWN their art again without rip-offs. It has the potential to eliminate fraud from banking, elections, medical records and more.

Hoskinson and his team have already solved the limitations of previous blockchain based crypto-currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, created by their environmental impact through intensive power consumption to ‘mine or transfer a coin’.

Even if you don’t know what any of this means, just know this, Cardano has done deals with African and American govenrments to deploy their decentralised technology in a variety of industries. In 2021 they announced plans to launch an identity and record-keeping system on Cardano for Ethopia’s five million students.

This means TRUE election results, an end to fraudulent identities, a way for Ethiopians to get paid without using cash… the potential to ACTUALLY change the poverty-stricken situation of many! This is just one of many exciting projects of Hoskinson’s that show true leadership.

The platform is set

 

With all these exciting decentralised platforms creating so much opportunity for banking, politics, and the arts, as well as innovative science that has the ability to WAKE UP and create fulfilment for so many people… I’m filled with hope.

We are building towards a perfect storm.

(And no, not a rogue climate change-fuelled tornado!)

 

The most exciting thing is, what I see every day when I work with my clients – regular corporate managers, business owners and consultants!

In my work of helping people identify their own unique contributions (by tapping into their unique magic), I can honestly say I see that level of leadership inside every last one of us! Every one of the people I have worked with to unearth their unique contribution has a powerful way of leading people and making a massive ripple effect downstream, to create meaningful, creative, and innovative change for the better.

I believe, if we all treat humanity and the environment as if it were our own health, or the health of our children, and take the lead that we have inside us, we will survive.

And our kids might even inherit a thriving planet, not a limping one.

Look, it might take a worldwide collective and simultaneous psychedelic trip to get us there, but I don’t think so!

If we keep broadening our minds and continue to wake up to the fact that we can poke a goddamn hole in the paper bag we accepted as our reality before now (thanks for the metaphor Steve Jobs), then we might just have a chance!