The Great Resignation

Miscellaneous Dec 19, 2021

People worldwide are quitting their jobs. You are likely to know this if you have taken the time to watch the news. I'm not going to go through statistics; you can get them online.

All these years, our lives have revolved around our work. We met people only on weekends. We went on drives and road trips only when we were free from work. We planned stay-cays and tours only during holiday seasons. Our jobs have effectively been running our lives all this time. Work was supposed to be a means of earning money. We were supposed to work to make a living and not live to work. There's a difference. This pandemic has made people realise the uncertainty and fragility of life. It has instigated people to maintain a proper work-life balance. In various surveys that were conducted, employees stated burnouts and too much overtime as major reasons for quitting. Employers not caring for their employees' well-being was another major cause. Many complained that they skipped weddings and family functions for work.

This mass resignation is also called ‘A Worker's Revolution’. Employees now want a job that would respect their work-life balance. They demand a job that would want them to work only for 3-4 days a week, one that is flexible and rewarding. A working parent wants to pull time out of his/her job to play with their children. A 25-year-old wants to finish his work in 5-6 hours and spend the rest of the time with his family and friends instead of toiling with work for 10-12 hours a day. The world has seen a sharp increase in the number of start-ups during the pandemic. Those who didn't have the capital to invest have turned their hobbies into a full-time profession and started freelancing. Many have opted to upskill. People have understood the importance of being around family and caring for them. This is the pandemic's legacy.

Every major historical event has affected our economic decisions and has led to major changes in the work-life of people. During the world wars, when men went out to fight, women took over the operation of factories for the first time. And then, people stayed in jobs after the great depression. The world saw a similar quitting and switching of work in the late 80s and 90s. People clung on to their jobs after the great recession. Now the pandemic has put forward another reality check on life. Those who survived the pandemic value their life more than their work. However, in India, there's no such sign of a mass resignation for obvious reasons like the lack of unemployment benefits and the lack of social security.

As far as employers go, companies must now revolve around flexibility. Rearranging their human resources and diversifying their workforce is vital for a company to survive this mass resignation. Some companies have started giving collective holidays to their employees. Some offer shopping coupons and travel allowances. Companies now have to realise that salary is no more the only criteria for people to work. They are tired and organizations have a responsibility to give them sufficient reason to work for them. I'm very optimistic that the situation will turn in favour of the employees.


Vishaal Harikrishna Kumar

I write because I have something to say. You are encouraged to think outside the blog and not to read in between the lines.