In March 2018, there were 6.6 million job openings and 6.6 million people looking for jobs. In other words, at the same time companies were struggling to fill positions, there was a job available for each person who wanted one. Those open positions went unfilled for several reasons, but one in particular stands out: thanks in large part to educational trends and expectations, there is a major disconnect between the skills that employers need and the skills that job seekers have.
Did you know that 71% of all workers in the US are either unengaged or actively disengaged from their jobs? That means that a healthy majority of the workforce is just killing time when they are on your payroll. But it doesn’t have to be that way. You can create an environment where engagement comes naturally. And, engaged employees are between 42-70% more productive than unengaged employees.
This means that the potential to avoid having to hire more people, which is a challenge in today’s economy, may rest in just engaging the employees you have to let them be more productive.
And usually, all you have to do is ask!
Today’s Digital Natives Will Shape Tomorrow’s Communication
I recently drove my 12-year-old daughter and two of her friends to a Sixers game about an hour away from where we live. As we made our way toward Philadelphia, we all chatted about the girls’ sports activities, favorite classes, and spring break fun. About 20 minutes into the drive, however, the conversation dwindled and (with the exception of some Bruno Mars and Drake playing on the radio) silence settled over the car. It didn’t take me long to notice that all three girls were focused on their phones.
Have you ever heard of phone stacking? When a group of people are out together (say, for dinner at a restaurant), they put their cell phones facedown in a stack and do their best to ignore the buzzes and rings and other notifications. At the end of the meal, they all pay their bills as usual—but if someone grabs his or her phone before that point, that person has to pick up the whole tab.
When this “game” was created a few years ago, it made waves because it hit a nerve: growing numbers of people were fed up with the intrusion of mobile devices into face-to-face social gatherings. But restaurants aren’t the only places where phone stacking could come in handy. Conference rooms, too, could benefit from phone-free interactions.
In December 2017 the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the national unemployment rate was an astonishing 4.1%. This low rate means that many companies have unfilled openings because there simply aren’t enough people looking for jobs. More likely, though, they’re struggling to fill open positions because the type of people those companies want or need to hire are already employed by their competitors.