Forget job security - workers are in a state of renewed confidence and 1 in 3 people will seek new employment in the first quarter of 2011, predicts high performance coach and workplace management expert Tony Wilson.
'The global financial crisis meant people clung to their job as a safety measure but the game is about to change. The balance of power is shifting towards the employee and a pent-up demand for change is brewing in the workplace," he said.
According to Tony, the speed of this shift and the impact it could have on the corporate world in 2011 could take a lot companies by surprise.
'The financial crisis left a major workplace hangover. An overwhelming number of people are operating in survivor syndrome and are now ready to move on," he said.
'Many employees are unhappy with the way they or their colleagues have been treated and the grass is now looking much greener. The majority of workplaces will have to shape up or the talent will shift out."
Tony claims employee attitudes in 2011 will be inspired by a changed value set, and conventional sweeteners such as high salary or generous leave will no longer foster employee loyalty.
He warns companies should do everything in their power to ensure they are engaging their staff this year or potentially risk a mass exodus of talent.
'Neither the hours worked, nor monetary reward, will be a major predictor of engagement at work in 2011. The number one thing workers will want out of their job is a company with great leaders and a solid plan to develop their people," he said.
'Many companies don't provide regular feedback to their staff, let alone have a formal employee development program. This is a costly mistake. As busy managers give less time to developing their people, companies are losing the very employees they need to succeed in the long-term."
According to Tony, many employees will put salary and stability at the bottom of their list and will instead demand the following five perks from their job in 2011:
'Being given a job to do but not being trusted to do it properly is a major reason why workers will move on in 2011," said Tony.
Tony says that a loss of autonomy means more than just disgruntled workers - it invokes a threat response and the ability to problem-solve goes out the window.
'Micromanagement has been begrudgingly tolerated in the past but it will now send people straight to the competition," he warns.
Tony says people have a built-in reward mechanism, and achievement provokes feel-good and performance chemicals that encourage employee loyalty.
'2011 will see people wanting to move to a job with good internal systems where their achievements are measured and celebrated," he said.
'The ugly truth is a huge number of employees I speak to claim that managers stop them from achieving the things they are supposed to achieve. And what's more, the vast majority of people actually want to do a good job. Allowing people to achieve, and removing all the barriers to making that happen, produces the right physiology for people to achieve even more," he said.
'This year employees will want a sincere boss who takes the time to build relationships," said Tony.
According to Tony, feeling part of a team is 'absolutely crucial" to any workplace. He claims creating a solid team culture should be the number one priority for every company this year, regardless of structure or size.
'If employees feel alienated from one another, it won't be long before people leave. A safe social environment creates a reward response in the brain, sending out chemicals that help us feel happy and perform at our mental peak," he said.
'Most companies only focus on building their team once or twice a year but it needs to be an ongoing process," he said.
Tony claims the GFC caused a lack of consistency in the workplace and the end result is an overwhelming number of unsettled workers.
'This year will be all about fairness, delivering on expectations and keeping the goalposts still. If people get a whiff of double standards or favoritism, they will think about moving on," he said.
'As candidate shortages continue, the key to success isn't in attracting the new key players, it's identifying, developing and retaining existing talent," said Tony.
'Professional development and training offered will be one the top reasons people stay or leave a company in 2011, well ahead of salary or benefits," he said.
Tony Wilson's new book, Jack and the Team that Couldn't See, is out now: https://www.girl.com.au/jack-and-the-team-that-couldnt-see.htm
Originally a performance coach for elite sporting teams and athletes throughout Australia and the USA, Tony Wilson works closely with executive leaders in many of Australia's leading organisations to create a culture of high performance. He is bridging the gap between what science tells us about high performance and what we do on a daily basis. Tony has invested over 15 years to high performance management and is a sought after executive coach and Director of Teamcorp Australia.