More than 300 retailers filed for bankruptcy in 2017, according to data from BankruptcyData.com. That’s up 31% from the same time last year. Most of these stores are suffering from the same thing: a shift away from traditional storefronts to online shopping.
What lesson can we learn from this? If you want to succeed in business, you must re-invent your organization by staying ahead of customer’s trends, interests, preferences and habits. Madonna, Cher and Lady Gaga are queens of reinvention, as they continually modify their look, style and sound, in an effort to continually connect with the world.
But your re-invention shouldn’t stop at having your finger on the pulse of your customer’s needs. You must also have your finger on the pulse of your employee’s needs. By 2020, half of the workforce will be made up of Millennials and they are very vocal about what they want: jobs that have meaning and provide them with a sense of purpose. Fifty percent of all Millennials say they would take a pay cut for work that matches their own values.
This generation also values 24/7 communication and is used to receiving instantaneous feedback. Millennials grew up in an era where they can immediately ask questions of, and share opinions with, the world thanks to technology. In short, they want to be connected and engaged, and smart leaders will re-invent their cultures or risk losing these employees to more dynamic companies.
WHAT CAN I DO? Does your organization have its finger on the pulse on employee’s needs? Two effective ways to do this are to conduct an Employee Engagement Survey and/or Employee Focus Groups. Regardless of your roll, you can approach leadership, sell them on the need to understand employee’s interests, preferences and habits, and recommend next steps. Why? Because your success depends on it. If Not You, Who?
Jill Christensen is an employee engagement expert, best-selling author, and international keynote speaker. She is a 2017 Top 100 Global Employee Engagement Influencer, authored the best-selling book, If Not You, Who? Cracking the Code of Employee Disengagement, and works with the best and brightest global leaders to improve productivity and retention, customer satisfaction, and revenue growth. Jill can be reached at +1.303.999.9224 or firstname.lastname@example.org.