In the year 2021, the high potential talent bubble will burst, and your best people will leave. Unless you take action now!
Senior leaders and boards of every corporation in America will be sideswiped by these resignations. These high potential team members are currently running your organizations, expanding revenues, and leading efforts to modernize your business efforts. In a year of countless challenges, these individuals were the problem solvers, the leaders, and the executors that saved the company.
Losing these individuals will cause costly delays, put accounts into jeopardy, and derail new initiatives. And it is expensive, with the Society of Human Resource Management estimating it will take 200% of the high potential’s salary to replace them. These leaders could be the current and future leaders of your organization, if you can keep them.
The secret to keeping high potential talent is to understand why the talent bubble has been created and why is it about to burst in 2021 driving record high potential talent turnover.
- Low Resignations in 2020: With the pandemic arriving suddenly in 2020, voluntary turnover or resignations quickly decreased. High potentials were focused on retaining a paycheck. As the world stabilizes this year, look for this pent-up bubble to explode and high potential talent will begin to look for new opportunities again. If your resignations were down 50% in 2020, I predict they will be up 200% this year.
- Exhausted Heroes: 2020 brought about very accelerated change! Key decisions and workload including building work from home cultures, reinventing businesses to adjust to changes, and making challenging workforce decisions, were all placed on the shoulders of the high potentials with minimal resources. They are just plain exhausted!
- Delayed Recognition: Executives are understandability pessimistic starting 2021. Many companies are delaying pay increases, canceling bonuses, postponing leadership development, and cancelling annual award meetings. After a year of high effort, these high potentials are seeing the lack of rewards as a lack of investment in them, and therefore driving disengagement.
- Inclusion Matters: 2020 also brought the importance of feeling included and respected to the forefront of organizations. Your high potentials may not feel included because of their ethnic background, sexual orientation, age, marital status or political views. The pent-up turnover of high potential talent will feel more empowered to find an organization where they feel included in 2021.
- More Positions Available: Executives and board of directors have used the pandemic to better evaluate their talent and many have determined they need to upgrade key leadership positions. Applicants are no longer restricted to only apply locally as companies have embraced remote work, quadrupling the number of positions available to each high potential leader.
- Embracing New Beginnings: Many high potentials have felt stuck in their jobs. The new work from home experience will not be given up easily and the transition back to the office and back to commuting will be painful. Leaders will look for new opportunities that work best for them. As they try to defeat exhaustion and find balance, high potentials are feeling empowered to live their best lives. And it is way easier to apply for a job when working from home!
It isn’t too late to avoid these six warning signs of the talent bubble bursting at your organization. Companies can avoid losing valuable high potential talent by continuing promotions, hiring executive coaches, ensuring inclusion, and by giving these leaders a seat at the table. These are not costly decisions when focused on those select, high potential individuals. Listen to their concerns and take action immediately. Take note of exhaustion, and help them to find balance through delegation, reprioritization, and providing them with the resources they need to be successful. It is a new world and that world is calling your high potential talent away from you. Take time to connect with your high potentials and take immediate action to let them know you want them to stay!