Yes. Interesting times to say the least. Really glad that you posted this, as I had not given this a lot of thought yet. It brings a couple things to mind for me:
- The downside of expectations: A good friend of mine likes to tell me from time to time (especially when I am bummed out about an outcome), that an expectation is a resentment waiting to happen. It is much easier said than done, but I think the more that we are able to focus on specific outcomes and work to make sure that we are behaving in accordance with our ideals, principles and aspirations the less misery we will have in our lives. But as I said, easier said then done…especially after someone has worked for 10 or 15 or 20 years “towards something.”
- The engagement/authenticity dividend: There is probably a catchier name for this, but I have not figured it out yet. But I think that this is a time when we will see some very tangible evidence of the benefits to those organizations that have truly engaging cultures, authentic leadership, open and candid communication. I think that those organizations are still a rarity, but they do exist. I think that the nature of the relationship those organizations have with their employees is much more resilient and flexible than in the more typical organizations. All relationships and agreements can be tested by times like these, and the ones that contain the least amount of truth, trust and empathy will likely fail the quickest. The more honest you can be with employees today (regardless of what you told them yesterday) the better off you are going to be in the long run.
I totally agree with you regarding those Gen X folks, who may be distrustful to begin with and also increasingly tired of being overlooked in the generational conversation. They may be getting ready to launch the next great wave of “I’m going to blaze my own trail,” but it might be more bad news for corporate America.
When you get a chance I would love to hear from you a “Top Five Things you Need to Say to you Workforce Today” for HR leaders.