Stage 1: Shock and Disbelief of The Break-Up Series

16 Jul 2019

Shock & Disbelief

Who’s to blame – the employer or employee? 

  1. Role Redundancy (8%)

    Shock Factor: 4/5 

    Truth: The economic situation is unpredictable and anyone will be taken aback when a role is made redundant. Employers have to muster up the courage to tell their employees that business is heading south and there’s a need to cut costs; employees on the receiving end worry about their rice bowl. 

    How to overcome this: 

    Employers: Downsizing is an inevitable process during an economic downturn, much less if a company have to discontinue its business. In events of downsizing, interim or contractual employments could be an alternative for many firms who are looking to keep headcounts low or even pay by the hour. 

    Employees: Today many firms are looking for dynamic individuals who are flexible in their work scope. Overcome this by assuming certain roles that will keep your skills relevant.  

  2. Lack of Business Processes & Systems (12%)

    Shock Factor: 2.5/5

    Truth: Today many tapped on their entrepreneurial side and attempt to be their own bosses. Setting up a firm is never easy and requires patience and dedicated operations skill set to ensure that processes and structures are in place. Resources are precious in any firm and typically smaller firms have a smaller share in comparison to bigger firms.

    How to overcome this: 

    Employers: Patience and hiring the people with the right attitude are the keys to overcoming this. A small firm would require the right people to roll their sleeves up and just get the job done.

    Employees: Decide first if you’re willing to have the above two attributes. A smaller set-up would give you the opportunity to explore other functions of the business and tap on your problem-solving skills that many firms appreciate.

  3. Salaries (42%)

    Shock Factor: 3.5/5

    Truth: Employees are always curious about market trends and salary benchmarks. It is not uncommon for many to ask around their peers (most likely from other firms) on their current drawn. It will come as a surprise(!) if there’s a significant difference when they find out that their peers are paid more (or less) than their current drawn. Likewise for employers, the salary guides released by many recruitment firms are a rough gauge for them to stay competitive in their respective markets.

    How to overcome this: 

    Employers: We understand that there are budgets to work around. While it seems like a vicious game of musical chairs, employees cannot help to get paid for the same job in a different environment. Lately, firms conduct “stay interviews” to catch up on their employees’ well-being and thoughts, this can assist in hearing employees out on the challenges faced and how technology can be used to enhance their experience in your firm.

    Employees: It’s important to prioritise your needs and wants at every stage in your career. With each title band, organisations have to work with a specific salary range. Speak to your direct supervisor if there are other flexible options that your employer can do for you – work from home arrangements, flexibility on other working arrangements, etc. A great pay can only get you so far, sometimes it’s understanding your work-life needs that could be a long-term solution.

  4. Mismatched Expectations (9%)

    Shock Factor: 2/5

    Truth: Expectations of the job are typically communicated during interviews and a common assumption is that both parties understand the scope of work (even with the job description)! Job descriptions act as a guide for the individual’s contribution to the firm and depends on the size of the firm and the segregations of their operations! A smaller firm would require individuals to be more flexible and larger organisations would require strong familiarity in the scope of work.

    How to overcome this: 

    Employers: Typically, job descriptions are crucial for candidates because they usually want to know the extent of their jobs and what they are able to achieve with your firm. During your interview discussions, speak to them about how they feel about assuming a wider scope of work (temporarily or permanently) and that would be a good gauge of whether the individual and firm are a match.

    Employees: Interviews are a two-way street, hence understanding the size of the firm is the first step to understanding which spectrum of the scale you would require to be in: Flexible or Familiar? Again, this supports point 1 on role redundancy, in a smaller set-up, the skills you equip yourself with are keys to ensure that you continue to stay relevant with today’s needs.

  5. Under-appreciated Work (19%)

    Shock Factor: 3/5

    Truth: This scenario usually occurs after an employee happens to be in a firm for a substantial amount of time. The shock factor may not be as impactful as finding out that salaries are not on par for individuals but this creeping factor comes as a big surprise to employers who have their star candidates resign from the firm.

    How to overcome this: 

    Employers: “Stay interviews” are good approaches to nip the problem in the bud before your star employee resigns. If you’re currently leading a team, we understand that the client demands can be excruciating but do look back at your team to make sure they are still in this race with you. Teamwork makes the dream work!

    Employees: There will be days where you feel like no one appreciates your efforts, and you seem to be taken for granted. The truth is this: only you can really truly comprehend what you’ve given – be proud of yourself!  Always remember to find balance in and out of work before reaching a point of burn out. If you’re looking for a step-up or a pivoting to a more suitable role in your company, be proactive in speaking to your supervisor to discuss potential new goals in sight for you and the firm.

  6. Others (10%)

Stay tuned to Part 2: Denial and Guilt in the next part of our series!