Expressions like the Great Resignation and “quiet quitting” may not be buzzing as much as they were last year, but make no mistake: The United States is still experiencing an unprecedented employee-retention crisis. In 2022, a record 50.5 million Americans quit their jobs, leaving behind 11 million job openings. It’s going to take a while to recover from those losses. Other factors that led to so many employees exiting their role are still with us and are particularly problematic in a distributed workforce environment.
HR leaders may need to find creative solutions that will move the needle. Given that 2022 was a wake-up call, corporations can’t afford to hit the snooze button in 2023 and hope market forces cure the problem of employees quitting.
There is some good news, though. Many motivating factors that lead to resignation are related to issues that are within employers’ control. For example, a healthy corporate culture is a big reason employees choose to stick with a company. Studies have found that high percentages of jobseekers consider a company’s culture before applying to work there, and nearly half of employees are willing to take lower-paying jobs if they provide a better culture.
An Important Resource: Current Staff
One resource that’s right in front of employers? The people who have chosen the company. These individuals, who find the motivation to put in their best efforts each day, many of whom work remotely, present an opportunity to HR departments that just need to take the time to evaluate professionals’ needs and satisfy them.
What that often entails is enhancing the employee experience. Employees should feel respected, and the workplace should be designed to facilitate collaboration and engagement, which, in turn, allows employees to contribute to an organization in a meaningful way and be recognized and celebrated for those contributions. This applies at all levels; when a worker feels as though the employer would just as soon get someone else to fill the job, that person is much more likely to head for the door.
Fortunately, there are meaningful changes companies can make to enhance the employee experience and retain talent. What’s more, these engagement tools can also help with recruitment, as employees who are treated well are likely to tell others they love their job.
Areas for Improvements
Once an employer understands what aspects of the employee experience are working and not working, it should get creative when developing solutions that have been shown to be effective in directly addressing concerns and accomplishing HR objectives, such as:
- Recognition of employee successes
- Opportunities for growth and professional development
- A positive and healthy corporate culture
- Improved employee-to-employee communication
Can a Virtual Wine Tasting Stem the Turnover Tide?
Employers are trying all kinds of new, including virtual, ways to help workers feel good about logging in each day. One idea that’s showing success are virtual wine tastings. Why? Because when done right, these relatively inexpensive, online or hybrid events can accomplish much more than, say, a once-a-month happy hour. They’re designed to put guests at ease; encourage communication; and offer opportunities for learning, social interaction, and fun.
More specifically, here are some of the attributes of virtual wine events:
- Guests get to learn about wines that are produced by winemakers they might not be familiar with or grown in lesser-known wine regions.
- Employees feel appreciated because their employer invested time and resources into organizing these engaging events.
- Staff feel more connected to their coworkers and the organizations they work for.
- These events are flexible and can reflect an organization’s culture. For example, they can have an educational focus or offer an entertaining alternative to more traditional dinners.
- They can offer breakout sessions so teams can dig into pressing issues, especially for large companies.
- They can spin off into a wine-gifting program for employees to celebrate milestones.
Virtual, office, or hybrid wine tastings are a great way to enhance the employee experience so workers feel noticed and heard. They show a company is willing to go the extra mile to express its appreciation for good work. And the platforms that are used offer opportunities for a fun, social time, as well as in-depth learning about the employer and, of course, great wine.
Danielle Diliberti is CEO of Sommsation, a wine experience marketplace that gives wine enthusiasts and novices access to curated premium wines and sommelier-led private wine tastings through its online shop.