Much has been written about “The Great Resignation,” so we’re going to pile on with some observations of our own. At MarketPro, we focus on marketing executive search—no other discipline or level—so these observations come from a talent pool that ranges from Director to Chief Marketing Officer.
It’s been reported that nearly half of all full-time employees are either actively looking for or considering a new job search. As the leading chief marketing officer executive search firm, we would agree that within executive marketing ranks there is a lot of movement. Here’s what we are seeing and how companies should react.
Chief Marketing Officer Executive Search Firm States: “It’s not so much a resignation, as it is a realignment of priorities.”
The quarantines of 2020 and subsequent disruptions to normal work routines have caused employees to re-evaluate their work/life balance. For many executives, personal satisfaction is taking priority over a ‘job at all costs’ mentality. It’s a candidate-driven market to be sure, so what are the implications for businesses?
Executives want flexibility. The pandemic has demonstrated to most companies that employees can be effective without being present in the office every day. At the executive level, our C-suite placements know that face-to-face interaction is critical with their peers, their CEO and their teams—and they value that interaction. But many employees are no longer willing to sacrifice family/life opportunities to be physically present in the office, when they can still meet the demands of the job working remotely.
Expectations for executives haven’t changed, and the need to perform is as real as ever, but effective CEOs realize that balance is needed for maximum employee satisfaction and performance. With work-from-home (WFH), the pressure valve has been released, so executives feel ‘less guilty’ about prioritizing a child’s sporting event, for example, over work that can be done after hours or on another day.
Creating a work environment that celebrates this re-prioritization and considers the general well-being of the whole employee is becoming more the expectation among top performers.
Executives want growth. Successful top marketers want to create value for the company as well as participate financially in the growth that they create. These are driven individuals who help transform a business and are energized by that challenge and opportunity.
If the growth and financial opportunity are lacking, they tend to be more open to considering a company that will reward them for their skill and expertise. If you are not providing upward mobility and long-term incentives, you may be falling behind. In today’s marketplace, candidates realize that there are other options available to them.
Previously, individuals with no intention of relocating were restricted to businesses based on a reasonable commute. Now, with so many companies offering remote and hybrid roles, these executives have few geographical restrictions to job opportunities. Your competition just expanded to the entire country—even globe. The blinders are off, as this has opened a world of possibilities, from the companies they target to the industries that they might explore.
Recently, we placed a remote CMO with a company that had a travel requirement to spend one week per month at HQ. To get the top-level candidates they wanted in this marketing executive search, they hired an individual 2,000 miles away. The company was thrilled with their new CMO, and the candidate was excited that we brought an opportunity to him that wasn’t anywhere in his consideration set. This type of arrangement is becoming more and more common.
Companies need to understand that the marketplace has changed.
It’s a supply and demand world and, for now, demand for talent is at an all-time high. Salaries are increasing quickly. Expectations are changing. Competition is growing. And, opportunities for marketing executives are expanding.
Now is a good time to evaluate how you stack up. You may not be able to offer a fully remote role or unlimited PTO—those perks might not be realistic for your business—but you should know where you stand. Ensuring that you are paying a competitive rate and giving your top marketers a reason to stay through long-term incentives will help your retention rate.
Strong marketers, those who can fundamentally change the trajectory of your business, know their market value. Make sure that you know it as well before you start your marketing executive search, or be at risk for “The Great Resignation” coming to your way.
Author: Rob Collins