The Great Resignation and

What It Means to Your Career

You’ve heard about the Great Resignation of 2020/21 that continues even now. Perhaps you’ve been a part of it or considered joining.

It’s real!

It’s estimated that 40% of the global workforce are considering leaving their employers this year.  40% worldwide!!

There are millions of you out there that are re-evaluating your career future, and generally wanting to get off the “merry-go-round” that was assumed to be a normal working trajectory.  That was the normal we left behind, before the pandemic.  And this is happening at all levels, from minimum wage/entry level to the C-Suite.

Why is this happening?

The global pandemic was a wake-up call for many of us.  It truly brought home a sense of mortality and loss of security.  An opportunity to take a pause and reconsider your life.  Pandemics tend to reshape society at fundamental levels and this one is no exception.

Employees want to be more than a “human resource.”  Where an employer was assumed to have their own domain over your career and work life, the question has pivoted to, what can an employer do for the quality of my career and life overall?

A sense of safety, so important for employee efficiency and engagement, is all but gone.  Employers who require you now to come back to the office, can threaten your sense of health and well-being.  Similarly, those employers who require vaccination may also be perceived as threatening safety, depending on your vaccination status and beliefs.

There is a feeling that if this “is it,” is it time to look at all of the aspects of my life, particularly my career?  Am I getting more than I’m giving?

The Great R is real! What about you?

Here are some points to think about if you are rethinking your life and career:

  1. Are you wondering if anyone else is ready to pivot jobs/careers? You’re not alone. As the statistic above stated…40% of the global workforce is reconsidering where they work and what they do.
  2. I have clients who may not have resigned but have re-negotiated working conditions to their satisfaction. One of these examples is continuing to work from home.  Many have discovered how convenient and productive working from home is.  And these clients want to continue!  Consider what you can bargain.  Find your negotiation leverage.
  3. Are you in a career that fulfills you? Since the pandemic, many of my clients have expressed concern about the direction (or lack thereof) of their careers.  Some want to stay in their original profession, but others are very very ready for change.  And still others are exploring entrepreneurship for the first time.  Find ways to determine if and how your career is fulfilling for you.
  4. Consider the stress that is caused by fewer workers in the workforce. Usually, less employees doesn’t mean less work…someone has to pick up the slack! Does this affect what you do?  What can be done about it?
  5. Is this a good time to change jobs? Yes, it’s a pandemic, and yes, there is a lot of uncertainty.  But this could be the perfect time to craft a job that you truly love.  It’s truly a job seeker’s market out there! Take some time to thoughtfully consider if you should stay or go.
  6. What if I love my career right now? Great!  Many of us do!  Take some time to assess the impact of the pandemic, if any, on your business and help share in the strategies to pivot and move forward for your company.
  7. Consider your options and really think about your vision for the future. Take some time to set a vision for the future of your career.  What are the gaps between where you are now and where you want to be?
  8. Make decisions about what is most important to you at this time. The pandemic and working from home have caused all of us to take a look at the priorities in work and life.  If you’re not sure what’s most important, I recommend journaling as a great way to let your mind get it all out on paper so that you can look at it, sort, and make decisions.
  9. Trust your gut.   Don’t rush into another job just to change jobs.  Stop to consider what is truly right for you at this time!

Historically, pandemics reshape society at fundamental levels.  The question is how do you carve out what you want and need as we go through and (hopefully soon) come out of this pandemic, for yourself and your career?


Take some time to consider the effects of the pandemic on your work and life.  What are some of the key points you are becoming aware of?  How can you leverage this learning into goals for the future?

Lupe Wood