Case studies / Employee Retention

Challenge to Employers: Understand the she-cession and improve your retention strategy.

Employers- the she-cession is upon you. According to a Mckinsey study, ⅓ of women are looking to downshift their careers or leave the workforce entirely. I can’t count the number of times I have been told by clients that they had employees who could not justify returning to work due to the cost of child care or rigidity of work expectations that impact child care.

When the pandemic started about a dozen of my employee’s at the time were patents to young children. I observed caregiving responsibilities to be disproportionately allocated to female employees who lived with a male partner. That observation is consistent with the research. Women still engage in the majority of child rearing and household tasks (shopping, cooking, cleaning, healthcare decision making to name a few).

The She-cession is a reality employers need to adress
The she-cession is a reality employers need to adress.

Prevent a She-cession, Prove it…..

Not to toot my own horn (makes me super uncomfortable) but I have always made employees self determined parenting responsibilities a priority over work. Yes, it takes work, is inconvenient, and impacts workflows. It also is the single most effective employee retention practice I have ever used. If you look at your organizations exit interviews or poll your existing employees I guarantee you will gather some data to support my experience. In fact, do it and share it with me. It helps you inform your practice and allows me to help future clients with people strategies.

Here are a few reasons I encourage organizations to prioritize supporting working parents (usually mothers who are already at a disadvantage in the workplace for a multitude of illegal unethical and immoral reasons)

1. It is the right thing to do

2. It inspires loyalty to the team/organization

3. These employees are more engaged and productive

4. Stressed out parents at work do not perform as well as parents whom are given space to address child needs that happen during “work hours”

5. Other employees are usually more than willing to “jump in” to cover or assist with job responsibilities.

6. Allowing teams to help cover work responsibilities actually builds team cohesion when framed and planned effectively.

It is no longer viable to ignore the implications, cost and effort associated with adopting organizational policies that make parenting difficult. To address this in your organization, start with getting input and feedback from your employees. As stated many times before, It is not organizational change that is effective, it’s how you go about it that matters. It’s the process, not the outcome. Your human capital is your most valuable asset. Keep working to make that a reality. It will literally pay off exponentially.