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Jan 25, 2022

The job landscape is in a major state of influx right now.  Leaders are being tested in ways they never imagined.  Employees are making decisions that don’t seem to be considerate of the organization and it’s getting harder and harder to determine how to stay afloat.  Closed classrooms, absent teachers, contact tracing, visitor restrictions, vaccine requirements…

The most important leadership cue that I can share at this time is to NURTURE THOSE THAT REMAIN. Don’t get me wrong, I am clear that consistency doesn’t always mean loyalty.  Nonetheless, whoever continues to show up and does even the bare minimum deserves some attention. 

Here is why this is so important:

  • They are the ones that show up and you don’t know what they had to endure to be present.
  • This is probably not what they signed up for… none of us did.  If you ignore this reality, they might just take advantage of the many job opportunities that are available. 
  • They need the extra push we are carrying more than we ever have. 
  • They are exhausted by everything we have all had to carry over these last two years.  Somedays their absence is better than them being asleep at the wheel.
  • They will be your recruiters.  How you treat them in times of crisis is what they will rehearse to other clients and potential staff.
  • Like you, they are working harder than ever except many of them are not decision-makers. 

Here are a few things that you can do:

  • Think of them fondly.  Your thoughts shape your actions. 
  • Treat them well, in a way that matters to them. 
  • Thank them genuinely, with the same sincerity that you put into demands and complaints.   
  • Write a thank you note.
  • Pay (or tip) them the best you can and be flexible where you can. 
  • Revisit procedures, job descriptions and staffing plans like COVID will be with us always.  This will position everyone for long-term success. 
  • Create a refreshment stand for delivery workers.
  • Invest in them and reap a return.  Provide professional development opportunities or other incentives

This list is intentionally simple, because it needs to be attainable.  What you water is what will nurture those that remain.

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