If you are a manager in a multi-location organization, it has traditionally been a sign of loyalty and dedication to show your desire and flexibility when it comes to making the sacrifice to uproot your life and carry it to a new, potentially less desirable location. Most likely the rewards to the individual are an increase in position and earnings. Without this openness to move there is typically fewer opportunities for upward mobility. However, an employee’s argument against such a move has grown in its validity and organizations are feeling the results.
When I reconnected with some past workmates recently, they informed me of the big news that they might be moving. They’d been offered the opportunity to relocate and were literally torn by whether they should do it or not. Weighing the possibilities and being on a tight time scale seemed paralyzing.
For decades, multi-unit locations have relied on relocation as a primary tactic when it comes to talent management strategy. The viability of this tactic has been evaporating as the economic landscape has changed. This is shown by the fact that 79 percent of respondents indicated that reluctance to relocate has increased according to an emerging trends survey.
Managers are not as open to moving due to the higher risk and diminishing ability to financially recover from such a change. Relocation packages have been overhauled, reduced or disappeared. Real estate in particular has become a thorn in both the company’s and the manager’s side as selling one’s home in a down market just doesn’t make sense for either party when a relocation package is in play. Additionally, the overall stability of the job market has made employees fear the instability of the new position, making them less open to take the chance of having to rebuild in an unknown community.
So, what are companies doing to maintain and grow their talent? They are seeking alternatives including everything from short-term relocation that will spur a location to get on track—to focusing resources on building and maintaining a strong talent pool versus relying on workforce mobility. As a manager, it is important for you to provide insights and feedback to these new programs as they are being designed. Sharing your current situation with HR and training is now encouraged as it helps them build a talent management strategy that will energize their top performers, such as yourself.
To be able to communicate your position you must take a moment to assess it. Weighing the pros with the cons will help you understand today what you may do if you are offered a move in your career tomorrow.
What would it take to get you to move happily? Title, raise, benefits, top city, less stress, more opportunity, increased responsibility, new skill set exposure, better schools, cost of living change in proportion to salary, change in general.
What is the job market like? Are there other jobs in my field available? What are the employment trends and forecasts? Can my spouse or partner find a job?
What is your career path? Do you want to move up? How often will you be expected to move to keep moving up? Will you gain a high level of experience? Where do you want to end up?
What are the costs? To your career, finances, family and friends, possible job loss if you don’t take the move, less work/life balance.
Managers must be active in running their businesses and the same thing holds true in life. By planning for your future now, you’ll be able to make healthier decisions that will bring you long-term success.
Shiloh Kelly, Vice President of Marketing, Red Book Solutions