Monthly Archives: May 2022

Job Churn Era & ‘New/Current’ Customer schism

CNN reports that employees changing jobs in USA see an immediate 18% pay bump. Sobering, but not surprising that firms owned by hedge funds or even more remote (Mars-bound!) billionaires are out of touch with their employee’s daily struggles.

What will happen now? Employees who are restless, capable, aggressive/assertive, disgruntled or disrespected will now ‘jump’ elsewhere; dominoes will fall b/c those people’s roles were legit staffing needs. The ‘churn era’ will put pressure on HR /Recruiting, tho it need not have occurred at all.

Firms out of touch with their own customers commit this sin, too! In an oligopoly, a firm’s tendency is to ‘take current customers for granted’, yet obsess about new-to-market prospects (immigrants, teenagers coming of age, etc). The reason? Sexy Metrics! New customers are EZ to count [“Wow! Look at the gains!”] and the Marketing Dept often uses an unrealistic Lifetime duration over which to amortize their overly generous trial offers. Are the Metrics to retain a customer equally obvious & sexy? Nope. Reinvesting seems boring- and unnecessary [“after all, who would leave us?]

Examples? Canada’s giant telecoms reserve their best promotion offers & fastest response times for new customers [thereafter, your best hope is for late, reactive, limited consideration [& as the saying goes “Service requested is service failed” ie if you must ask for it, it’s already too late to feel respected]. Our chartered banks dote on new customers, but once you’re in, you’ll pay service fees for everything, submit to brutal ForEx rates, nasty checking account fees, etc. [why should they care? They signed you up- and their competitors are all doing what they’re doing, so what would you gain by switching?]

Is there a remedy? Not an obvious one. In oligopolies, the status quo remains until one player, for reasons unknown*, wakes up & starts to rebalance service efforts/offers to show respect for current customers. *They might justify such a strategic shift after doing some testing, which will inevitably show a remarkable improvement in customer retention, if you just stop disrespecting or ignoring current customers.

Respect what you have. It’s unsexy, but it works. And it’s a lesson every firm must relearn periodically, even if they’re not part of an oligopoly. Or owned by a hedge fund. Or a Billionaire space traveler.

Realigning The Front Line

CNN’s stats on a surge in job quitting has one wondering if it’s a one-time adjustment, or something more profound/ lasting eg is it a major ‘reset’ to the economy & social structure? an overdue sign employees are actually in the wrong roles and time away during covid allowed them to ponder- and act? Do they find their in-person jobs unfulfilling? That wouldn’t be at all surprising- eg Canada’s minimum wage has risen at rates pathetically below that of inflation – and most notably- housing. The ‘dream’ to own a home is more & more ‘dreamlike’, unachievable.

As Rome burns, Nero plays fiddle. Tycoon wealth continues to amass, lopsidedly so through the pandemic. Company owners aren’t just keeping profits to themselves; their flaunting their wealth in the face of struggling front-liners, lavishing themselves with rockets, islands, super-yachts (that require bridges to be relocated/rebuilt) & buying newspapers & social media firms as egocentric mouthpieces.

Just a few predictions where this may go:

  1. Governments, even those thoroughly owned/controlled by the Elite, feel obliged to ‘feed the optics’ and promise tax reform, close the loopholes, etc. They’ll talk it up big, and do very little. Politicians.
  2. Talent scouts will be in big demand. Turnaround time on the vacant roles they’re tasked to fill will shorten
  3. Some job roles will see big wage increases; staffers already in those roles will see newbees hired at unfairly/illogically high wages which will, in turn, cause chemistry/ morale issues!
  4. Many job roles never considered work-at-home will be reclassified as such, at least for a few days a week.
  5. The most out-there of my predictions; a property demand shift. Covid’s initial impact on realty was to inflate vacation properties; the wealthy who owned 2nd homes or cottages, could relocate to them. But less scenic ie non-recreational centres 2+ Hours from the GTA haven’t seen values soar. Yet. imo many young couples still dream of being home owners and may ‘go rural’ ie 2+ hours from GTA. Chatham, Walkerton, Strathroy, Wingham, Smiths Falls, Perth- are you ready for your CloseUp?