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A Mind to Work

We have read the stories about the inability to find good talent. Even the best talent is challenged regarding an excellent work ethic. Problems in the talent pool include wanting unrealistic salaries and benefits, too much flexibility, and promotion without performance. Hiring managers are frustrated and distraught regarding team building and retention.

There are many factors related to a lack of qualified talent. First, we have generations who are being raised without a work ethic. Second, our educational system has made students lazy through use of the Internet and Ai. Lastly, our collegiate institutions do not prepare young adults for careers in the marketplace or relationship building. People have become "free agents" taking their skills, experience, and abilities to the company with the highest bid. Loyalty and appreciation are almost non-existent.

Companies have used every gimmick and gadget to retain top talent. Bonuses are given to people just to show up for work. You can bring your child to work every day, not just on the annual "Bring Your Child to Work Day." Companies build tennis courts, swimming pools, gymnasiums, spas, and other amenities on their campuses to attract talent. Starbucks are everywhere and flexibility to work remotely is a part of corporate policy, not just an option. Let's not forget the unlimited mental health days and vacation.

The landscape of employment has changed because the mindset of employees has changed. Some people want to be paid for being alive, not for the contributions they make to the marketplace and to society. Fewer Americans have a mind to work. There are three key factors in developing employees with a healthy mindset and work ethic.

  1. Employees must know how to handle setbacks and challenges. Many employees do not have emotional balance. They cannot handle death, disruption, or discouragement. They run from problems and quit at the smallest setback. They give up if a solution is not easily discovered and cannot have conversations that end with disagreement. The new onboarding process for companies must include a week of professional development training. This will help where education and human development have been absent.

  2. Employees must be assigned a mentor. Part of the onboarding process must include mentorship. Once a hiring offer has been accepted, employees must be paired with other professionals in the office to provide guidance, wisdom, and knowledge from their professional journey. This knowledge is invaluable and will assist new employees in gaining the right perspective regarding personal and professional growth.

  3. Employees must be taught how to cultivate a resilient work ethic. Cultivating a work ethic involves involves self-assessment, self-management, consistency, continuous learning, and resilience in the face of challenges. Problem-solving, critical thinking, and being proactive in your assignment are also key attributes of the professional. Cultivating this attitude will increase employee value and longevity in the service to the organization.

Practicing these strategies will develop a strong work ethic, setting employees up to be promotable for future assignments. It builds the professional reputation and creates the foundation for a successful career.

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