A new employee-employer contract needs writing!

In her blog about Job Hopping Is the ‘New Normal’ for Millennials: Three Ways to Prevent a Human Resource Nightmare – Forbes, Jeanne Meister proposes some approaches to counter the “HR Nightmare” of job hopping among millenials.  Here’s my take on why this has occurred, posted in the Sacramento ASTD LinkedIn forum:


The unspoken contract between employee and employer, which was in effect in this country at least from post WWII until perhaps 1990 or so, was that if one dedicated their professional life to the company, the company would take care of them – even through retirement. Compensation, health insurance, worker’s comp, retirement plans, advancement, etc., were all part of that, as well as professional growth that benefited both the company and the employee. 

The tumult in turnover of the past few decades, IMHO, is largely attributable to the abandonment of this contract, from the employers’ side, in the name of efficiency and profits to shareholders. Children of the victims of this phenomenon have witnessed their parents’ plight and – in addition to being encouraged to discover and pursue their own “great work” – they have responded by migrating from employer to employer, to maximize their growth and personal potential. 

The way to reverse this trend, is for companies to recognize that people are not simply plug-and-play assets filling job roles, but are dynamic human beings, looking for the best way to grow themselves and help their own families thrive. A new contract between employee and employer needs writing! 


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