In the first two issues of this newsletter, we’ve touched on The Great Resignation - why it’s happening now, who is affected, and how mid-career workers are adjusting with these seismic systemic changes - and we’ve laid out some actionable tips for how to better use those informational interviews you’ll line up ahead. The third column will run on Saturday evening, and it’ll be sent to all paying subscribers. I hope you’ll be drawn to that subject as much as I was while putting it together over past weeks.
As I’ve announced previously, for free subscribers I intend to share on occasion batches of links for stories that caught my eye, ones that are directly relevant to the topics this newsletter tackles presently and will cover in the future. This set, below, as a whole should give a glimpse into where my head is at the moment and which topics I hope we will address together at some greater length. So have a spin through, at your convenience, and be in touch if anything here strikes your fancy. I’m adjusting the list of upcoming columns to match what people express and encourage.
The Great Resignation: Why more Americans are quitting their jobs than ever before. I thought this was an excellent piece that took the “60 Minutes” team to South Carolina to speak with a variety of people impacted by The Great Resignation. It was good to have the voices of some we haven’t heard from yet to hear about both the benefits and the drawbacks to new norms when it comes to work-life balance and evolving standards for what employees are willing to put up with.
Your Head of H.R. Is Now Basically the School Nurse. This is a subject I’ve been suggesting to future of work reporter for a little while now. Nobody signed up for this, especially two-plus years of it, when they took a job heading up HR. The people CEOs are turning to for guidance are similarly unprepared for this array of responsibilities, to make judgment calls on vaccine mandates and possibly force people to come to the office. It’s all extremely nuanced, and the people in charge have as little experience steering such a ship as you do.
The best company TikToks are unhinged — and it's working. I’ve read every published article about Duolingo’s viral success on TikTok, mostly because I know the comms team over there and I’m rooting for them. But there’s a quote in this piece of coverage that stood out to me as a model for what all leaders should do:
She added that companies looking to leverage their TikTok accounts shouldn’t be afraid to lean on younger employees. This position at Duolingo is Parvez’s first job out of college, and she wouldn’t have gotten the chance to run Duolingo’s TikTok if her co-workers hadn’t given her creative freedom and put their trust in her. “That’s super empowering for young talent, and shows that there is space for young talent on social teams,” she said.
Surging Covid-19 Puts an End to Projected Return-to-Office Dates. This past round of pushing back reopening offices dates led many to wonder what the actual point is at all in setting these dates. I believe they provide a destination to reach which, for some, can be comforting as opposed to being given indefinite timelines and little by way of updates.
From Gen X to Gen Z: bridging the workplace generation gap. If executed well, I adore programs like this one. Both sides can get a ton out of it. But I’d gather that most people would enter these sessions with cynicism. It’s hard to get comfortable with an arrangement like that unless you’re buying in to the benefit.
Why Some Workers Are Getting All the Covid Tests They Need. I began to hear about gestures like these late last month. I’m impressed that companies realized this was something they could assist with and to make available to their workers. Nobody has an appetite for another Zoom cooking demo. This is empathetic corporate giving, if you can afford it.
Friday Brunch: Work-From-Home’s Forbidden Pleasure. This is probably my favorite story of the week. I’m paying attention to all of the unexpected yet natural side effects to our changing way of life. This is one of a hundred things that will change as we move toward more unconventional work hours.
BUY NOTHING EXPLODED ON FACEBOOK — NOW IT WANTS A PLATFORM OF ITS OWN. This line near the end stuck with me:
Other admins like Katylin are thrilled to begin the transition away from Facebook toward something custom built for the Buy Nothing mission. The move has helped her prepare to leave Facebook, a platform she’s spent countless hours on while building a community she believes in.