How Imposter Syndrome Ends Up Costing You Money

We hear about the insidious effects of imposter syndrome all the time. How it holds us back from career progression, negates our self-worth and inhibits us from pursuing what we want to do. But according to research, it’s not just our mental health that’s impacted, but our wallets, too.

So what is imposter syndrome? “Imposter syndrome is a common mindset whereby we believe ourselves to be less competent than others perceive us to be,” explains clinical psychologist, Dr Jo Gee. The reason it tends to impact our money is that it’s so entwined with our careers. “Imposter syndrome can lead people to downplay successes, question their salary and even avoid promotions,” says Gee, adding that “it often results in symptoms of burnout from overworking, feelings of inadequacy and self-critique, a lack of satisfaction at work and a fear of asking for help.”

Alina Jaffer, financial expert at Virgin Money, explains the six key ways in which imposter syndrome works to keep us from meeting our financial potential. From the costs associated with FOMO to the FOAM (Fear Of Asking for More), we could be letting thousands slip by. Ahead, Jaffer and Dr Gee share the ways that imposter syndrome can hold us back financially, and their tips for combatting them.

Putting a blocker on pay rises and promotions

Asking for a pay rise is a tricky conversation that many don’t feel comfortable with and imposter syndrome can make this feel even more difficult,” says Jaffer. Sometimes it feels like we’re lucky to just have the job, so when faced with a conversation as tense as money and raises, the pressure to make your case can make you want to hide in the storage cupboard.

But remember, you have every right to approach the subject. If your managers make you feel audacious for asking to be paid for good work, that’s their corporate Stockholm Syndrome, not yours. All you can do is be prepared with clear reasons for your desire for a raise or promotion, and, as Jaffer advises, “try not to any feelings of inadequacy hold you back from having those difficult conversations that need to be had.”

FOMO costs

“Imposter syndrome can cause us to overcompensate in social settings, making us feel the need to prove ourselves or justify our friendships,” says Jaffer. Therefore, imposter syndrome sufferers may experience FOMO more regularly, spurring them to spend money unnecessarily for the sake of simulating a good time. What then happens is that we find ourselves without much left over to add to our savings.

Research even reveals that more than a third of people feel jealous when their friends go out without them and, on average, will spend around $628 a year on events they did not want to attend. That’s a lot of money to be shelling out when we really just want to be at home. According to Dr Gee, it’s all about getting pragmatic with your planning.“If you experience FOMO, we suggest saying ‘yes’ to a limited number of social events that you want to attend,” she suggests. “Using Likert scales where we rate our enthusiasm for a social event (from 1 ‘I don’t want to go’; to 10 ‘I really want to go’), can help to banish FOMO and guide us to what we really want to engage with.”

Buying into the trends

Women on average are spending around $1,800 to $4,800 each year on new clothing, about 27kg in weight, while throwing 23kg worth of clothing and textiles into landfills each year — and only wearing approximately 60% of these new clothes. This means you could be spending hundreds on outfits that you think will help you look the part, when in reality they’re going to waste.

Unfortunately, imposter syndrome makes it impossible for us to internalise our successes and, as a result, we can overly focus on our external facade to help us feel more confident. But as Gee notes, studies have shown that those with imposter syndrome who compensate through fashion report greater feelings of inauthenticity and lower scores in confidence. “Try ditching the catwalk for a mindfulness app… this practice has been shown to create long-lasting brain changes, which are even visible on MRI scans!”

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Overworking

Are you a perfectionist at work? “Imposter syndrome can result in individuals striving to meet impossible standards,” says Jaffer. And while we’ve been led to believe that putting in extra hours will get us noticed for the right reasons, and might even feel essential to getting a promotion.

But what we’re ultimately doing is setting an unhealthy precedent for work boundaries, and pushing ourselves to limits that could see us burn out before we even get to where want to go, as noted by Jaffer. “This immense pressure can lead to burnout and consequently, you might end up stagnating your career progression further and potentially missing out on that pay rise.”

“If you experience imposter syndrome, we suggest a two-pronged approach where you aim for 75% productivity, while seeking feedback and reassurance from colleagues regarding your work,” adds Gee. “This provides direct feedback which you can use to challenge your need to revert to your high standards.”

Avoiding financial advice

With imposter syndrome comes the belief that we’re not mentally equipped to handle big things, and, in some cases, we tend to bury our heads in the sand, preferring instead to avoid the stress of overwhelming life admin. But in news that will shock no one, your money isn’t just taking care of itself.

So if you’re not on top of your funds, not only are you going to miss out on financial opportunities, but you’re also going to fall into the trap of having to rely on banks and other institutions for everything, instead of knowing what’s happening with your money yourself. “While it’s difficult to quantify just how much money you could be losing out on,” explains Jaffer, “avoiding financial advice will ultimately have a negative impact on your finances.”

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Gee recommends asking for help, not even necessarily from professionals, but from those who know how to tell it straight. “As people with imposter syndrome fear being caught out as ‘imposters’, they rarely ask for help,” she explains. “If you suffer from imposter syndrome, set yourself a challenge to ask someone for help each month and make sure one month’s request for support revolves around your finances.”

Playing it safe

More and more people have been galvanised to become their own bosses during the pandemic. But the thing about imposter syndrome is that it can make taking this kind of plunge feel impossible and out of reach. And when we’re second-guessing ourselves, we tend to half-ass our plans or give up on them altogether, leaving it to the people who can do it. But that kind of defeatist attitude doesn’t get us far, especially when we know we’re working with great ideas and are just struggling to get started with them.

“Imposter syndrome can hold people back from starting up their own businesses as the feelings of inadequacy can trigger our freeze mechanism, leading to procrastination and downplaying of abilities,” explains Dr Gee, who suggests that establishing a solid network is the key to getting over our hangups. “Good mentors are worth their weight in gold when thinking of starting up a new business, as their ability to guide can be enough to motivate you past your self-doubt and to a plan for success.”

When you have imposter syndrome, you likely feel so lucky to have your current job that you wouldn’t dare be brave enough to go for something else – or do something riskier, like going freelance or starting your own business.

‘More than three million UK workers are looking to set up their own businesses in 2022 and almost half dream of becoming their own boss,’ says Alina. ‘However, imposter syndrome can make taking the plunge feel impossible. ‘Research reveals that side hustles can earn individuals an average of £4,500 a year, which you may miss out on should your anxiety hold you back.’ Dr Jo adds: ‘Imposter syndrome can hold people back from starting up their own businesses as the feelings of inadequacy can trigger our freeze mechanism, leading to procrastination and downplaying of abilities.’

‘In the current climate, regularly checking in on your finances can be daunting but it’s important to remember that it’s not unusual to find yourself feeling anxious or weighed down by money worries. ‘Instead of punishing yourself for any financial mishaps, focus on financial recovery and remember you can always seek professional advice if you’re not sure how to start.

‘Several financial advice services are available, whether you’re looking for guidance on managing debt, creating a budget, claiming benefits, or any other money concerns.’ We’d add a suggestion to that – if imposter syndrome is taking over your life, talk to a mental health professional. Let’s get to the root of the issue, unlearn these self-defeating thoughts, and start going for what we really want. A little extra cash will be a bonus.

Source: How Imposter Syndrome Ends Up Costing You Money

Related contents:

Imposter syndrome can affect any of us, irrespective of skill or position’ 

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سندرم ایمپاستر یا نشانگان خودویرانگری[۱] (به انگلیسی: impostor syndrome) یک پدیده روانی است که در آن افراد نمی‌توانند موفقیت‌هایشان را بپذیرند. بر خلاف آنچه شواهد بیرونی نشان می‌دهد که فرد با رقابت و تلاش به موفقیت رسیده، خود فرد تصور می‌کند که لیاقت موفقیت را ندارد و فریب‌کار است. فرد مبتلا به این نشانگان، موفقیت خودش را در نتیجهٔ خوش‌شانسی، زمان‌بندی خوب یا فریب دادن دیگران می‌داند و این موضوع که فرد باهوش یا تلاش‌گر است توسط خودش مورد پذیرش قرار نمی‌گیرد. این عبارت برای اولین بار توسط روانشناسان در مقاله ۱۹۷۸ عنوان شد و در آن برآورد شد که حدود ۷۰ درصد از انسان‌ها، نشانه‌هایی از این سندرم را در خود دارند. محققین از آن به عنوان مسئلهٔ مؤثر بر زنانی یاد می‌کنند که علی‌رغم داشتن جایگاهی برجسته در تحصیل و حرفه‌ٔ خود، پافشاری می‌کنند که هیچ استعدادی ندارند و هر کسی را که غیرِ این بیندیشد، نادان می‌پندارند. اما بسیاری از زنان موفق نسبت به اجرای خوب کار خود اضطراب دارند. دکتر سندی مان، استاد روان‌شناسی دانشگاه مرکزی لنکشر در بریتانیا، سه ویژگی اصلی سندرم ایمپاستر یا نشانگان خود‌ویرانگری افراد موفق را چنین بیان می‌کند:[۲] اولین ویژگی آن این است که افراد فکر می‌کنند دیگران تصوری اغراق‌شده و بیش‌از اندازه از توانایی‌ها و مهارت‌های آنها دارند، تصوری بسیار بزرگ‌تر از آنچه خود فرد از خودش دارد دومین ویژگی این است که شما در هراس شدیدی هستید که دست‌تان رو شود و دیگران فکر کنند در مورد توانایی‌های خود آنها را فریب داده‌اید. سومین ویژگی این است که به طور مداوم موفقیت‌های خود را با عوامل بیرون از توانایی و مهارت خودتان مقایسه و اندازه‌گیری می‌کنید و می‌سنجید …هانی لنکستر جیمز، روان‌شناس می‌گوید: «تجربهٔ داشتن سندروم ایمپاستر مانند این است که در تمام عمر با این ترس و نگرانی زندگی کنیم که دیگران ما را فریبکار بدانند و روزی بفهمند که در حد انتظارات و توقعات آنها نبوده‌ایم»

How to Fix The Minority STEM Crisis

Boasting a stellar academic record, a bachelor’s degree in engineering, and an MBA, Carla landed a plum job at one of the nation’s leading computer and information technology companies. She was excited to join the tech world and contribute to the Texas-based company where she hoped to make her career.

Carla’s excitement didn’t last. A Black woman, she felt overlooked and excluded from opportunities to advance. She found herself fighting for her annual raise. “I honestly felt,” she said, “like it was because I was a woman. I had probably one other woman on my team at various times, and it just seemed like the men weren’t having the same problems we were having …

I felt like at some point they weren’t listening to me.” After being asked to clean out the office of a colleague who had left the firm, she came across one of his old pay stubs. She discovered that he’d been making four times her salary despite having just one more year of experience. She abandoned her dream of working in technology and now works as a human resources officer for a law firm.

Carla’s story is one of 25 qualitative interviews at the core of a new report, STEM Voices: The Experiences of Women and Minorities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Occupations, published by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). (Subjects spoke to us on condition of anonymity.) Carla’s account—and others—echoes many of the themes discovered in an earlier AEI survey of STEM worker perspectives, which identified sharp differences in perception about workplace environment, support, and opportunities.

In that survey, conducted in 2020, white and Asian men saw the workplace as collaborative, open, and friendly and believed that women and minorities experienced their jobs in similar ways. Female and minority respondents said quite the opposite: They felt overlooked, not included as teammates, and cut off from the kind of coworker support their white and Asian male coworkers said they enjoyed. The survey data showed two almost entirely different worlds.

For STEM Voices, we tracked down 21 participants from the 2020 survey to paint a clearer picture of the people behind the survey data (interviews with a handful of other STEM professionals supplemented this research).

Our findings help explain why diversity remains elusive in STEM: Diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives (DEI) can get workers to the foot of the ladder, but they don’t help them climb.

Despite myriad recruitment programs and initiatives to boost the number of women and minorities pursuing science and tech careers, women make up just 34 percent of the STEM workforce, according to the National Science Foundation. At the same time, Black and Hispanic Americans are underrepresented, especially among workers with a bachelor’s degree or more.To be clear, the problems for women and minorities in STEM start well before employment and even before graduation from post-secondary institutions.

One reason for these failures is a faulty “pipeline” of female and minority students into STEM. Blacks and Hispanics, for instance, are less likely to attend college, major in STEM, or complete a degree than whites. In 2017–19, Black and Hispanic students earned just 7 percent and 12 percent of STEM bachelor’s degrees, respectively, according to the Pew Research Center, though they collectively represent 31 percent of the U.S. population. But as Stem Voices reveals, the pipeline isn’t the only problem. Our interviews delved deeply into workers’ personal and career trajectories to understand their experiences and the challenges they faced on the job.

Over and over, female and minority workers recalled confronting barriers to success, including social isolation, lack of mentors, and outright discrimination. Though STEM careers might be among the most lucrative and in demand in today’s economy, many of the female and minority workers we interviewed did not believe that those opportunities were available to them.Many said they felt shut out from opportunities for advancement and lamented the lack of supervisors and mentors who looked like them.

As the computer instructor Michelle P. told us, “I never had a female manager. Ever.” A majority of women and workers of color interviewed also said they had experienced some sort of stereotyping, discrimination, or bias because of their race or gender. Out of 19 female and nonwhite interviewees, only two said they had never personally experienced discrimination or disparate treatment.

Many reported hurtful comments based on stereotypes about their intelligence or capabilities, which affected their morale, performance, and perceptions about their field. Others said they were passed over for promotions and other opportunities. John D., a Black computer programmer, said he overheard colleagues at his firm say they “had to overlook qualified white people to hire unqualified Black people.”

Tiffany C., an Asian doctoral student, said she was labeled as “difficult to work with” at the engineering design firm in Austin, Texas, where she worked before returning to graduate school. Carla A., the engineer, was told she needed “to smile more.” Another interviewee said one of her supervisors micromanaged her work but not those of lesser-qualified whites. “There is some sort of preconceived notion that Black people don’t do well in sciences,” J.S., who holds a doctorate in veterinary science and works for the federal government, said.

Many interviewees said they confronted unwelcoming office cultures and that they struggled to fit in. Women with children said balancing work and family obligations was a particular challenge, while other women said they kept to themselves to avoid sexual harassment. “One of the things … I kind of learned early on, too … was to really make clear that … I was happily married and not looking for anything,” said the IT instructor Michelle P. David B., a Black engineer, said he felt the need to seem unthreatening to white colleagues and bosses at the naval shipyard where he worked.

“I had to downplay the fact that I went to a good engineering school,” he told us. “As a matter of fact, I had to downplay that I even had an engineering degree, and I was going for a master’s degree.” Compounding these issues are the vastly different perceptions alluded to above, held by white workers in STEM. According to our July 2020 survey of STEM degree holders, more than 50 percent of women and nonwhite STEM workers said they believe that women and minorities encounter more obstacles in STEM than in other industries.

AEI’s 2020 survey also found, however, that many white workers don’t agree that their female and minority colleagues face difficulties in advancement, which perhaps presents the thorniest challenge to improving diversity in STEM. To these white workers, there is no problem to fix. Just 26 percent of whites in AEI’s previous survey, for instance, thought Black workers face more obstacles in STEM than in other fields compared to 51 percent of nonwhite workers.

While only 34 percent of men said women face more hurdles to advancement, 54 percent of women said they did. The white men we interviewed for STEM Voices also reflected these sentiments. “I didn’t see people, females, and the few minorities that were there held back,” said the retired chemist Jack H., who spent his career in the Army and is white. “If you have the ability and the drive, people will see that.” Moreover, some interviewees, such as the wildlife biologist Todd B., said they believed that concerns about racism and sexism are overblown.

“When you have a fire and you let the fire burn down to nothing but an ember, when you start blowing on that ember, it’s going to break out into a flame again,” he said. “My opinion is if we stopped focusing on all the racism … if we just let it die down, it would eventually go away.” This chasm in perceptions between white male workers on the one hand and their female and minority colleagues on the other means that STEM’s diversity crisis defies an easy fix. Culture, moreover, is notoriously difficult to change through policy.

This is something of a tautology: One of the best ways to solve the STEM diversity problem is simply to increase the number of women and minorities in the sector. To do that, we need complementary strategies that boost the numbers of women and minorities in the STEM pipeline and “stop-loss” efforts focused on retaining those already in the field who can strengthen diversity and inclusion efforts on the job and provide more mentors for those in the pipeline.

Historically black colleges and universities play a crucial role in building the pipeline. Many of the interviewees in STEM Voices, for instance, attended an HBCU, where they had mentors, felt challenged in their courses, and belonged to a community. These foundational experiences, interviewees said, instilled the confidence and self-reliance they’ve needed to survive in challenging work environments.

One obvious step, therefore, is to increase investment in HBCUs, which produce a disproportionate share of the nation’s Black STEM graduates. Nearly half of the Black women who earned degrees in STEM between 1995 and 2004 graduated from an HBCU. Although the American Rescue Plan granted HBCUs a historic $2.7 billion, this much-needed infusion didn’t reverse decades of chronic underfunding.

Another pipeline strategy is to dramatically increase the number of Black and Hispanic K–12 teachers in STEM. Just 6 percent of K–12 STEM teachers in 2012 were Black, and only 6 percent were Hispanic, according to research by Tuan Nguyen of Kansas State University and Christopher Redding of the University of Florida. Increasing the number of minority teachers in STEM would provide more minority students with the role models and mentors that many of our interviewees said were critical to their decision to major in STEM fields in college.

Expanding internships and early work experience would also allow minority students to develop mentors and professional networks for future guidance and support. The retention challenge is rooted more in culture than in formal education and is, therefore, harder to address. The answer is not, however, more “diversity training.” As Frank Dobbin of Harvard University and Alexandra Kalev of Tel Aviv University write, these efforts can backfire because “anti-bias messaging tends to provoke resistance in white men who feel unjustly accused of discrimination or worry that their employers’ commitment to equity threatens their careers.”

Most of the disadvantage women and minorities experience is subconscious and unintentional, rather than overtly racist or sexist. This accounts for the wildly different interpretations of working conditions and opportunities we discovered in the survey and STEM Voices. Everyone understands the awkwardness and discomfort of being outnumbered in a social setting. Alerting managers and employees to “go the extra mile” to ensure that women and minorities are integrated into day-to-day work will do much to break down barriers.

As Dobbin and Kalev suggest, managing diversity should not be “relegated” to women and workers of color but be part of every manager’s job description. Over time, structural investments and human resource efforts like these will produce the numbers of women and minority professionals necessary to shift the culture of STEM for the better. In the interim, those in positions of authority and advantage in the workplace need to redouble their efforts to build resilient workers who can succeed despite the odds against them.

Source: How to Fix The Minority STEM Crisis | Washington Monthly

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The Secrets Of A Successful Social Media Strategy For Startups

The age of social media has disrupted conventional ways of advertising and transformed the way that businesses reach consumers. In recent years, social media itself has undergone radical changes. Mike Mandell is a leading lawyer on social media thanks to the popularity of his legal tips and entertaining posts. Here he shares his advice for startups and their founders.

Alison Coleman: Why is it so important for startups to develop a great social media strategy for their business?

Mike Mandell: In the past, companies had to spend years amassing a large following to have any hope of a substantial number of views. Today, short-form video content, 15 to 30 seconds in length, is the cutting edge. Quickly produced videos can launch a business into the spotlight overnight, or even faster.

By studying what captured the public’s attention, companies can follow up with more viral content on a consistent basis, keeping their brand relevant and vital. Social media represents a quantum leap in identifying niche markets. Algorithms know things about users that they might not know themselves. As the software learns more about individuals, its ability to influence them only grows.

Coleman: Many startup founders lack the time, resources, and budgets to create valuable viral content; how can they compete?

Mandell: First, let’s talk about budgets. With the dominance of short-form content, it’s not necessary to have one. Posting consistent, quality content alone can create a huge audience for your work. That said, even a shoestring budget can go far on social media. Allocating a few hundred bucks to boosting your posts would allow you to experiment until you see enough leads to justify the time and effort.

The beauty of this system is that cost scales with your success. If you’re making money, you’ll eventually want to hire staff to handle your social media. Businesses can do this more cheaply than they might expect. A million young people ache for these jobs, and they don’t expect a fortune in salary. They want in the game. That’s it. Keep in mind that these skills are learnable, as well. Consider offering paid internships.

Coleman: What tips do you have for startups for building a winning social media presence that pays dividends?

Mandell: Build an inventory before you launch. Have 10 to 20 videos on hand as a cushion. Avoid making your topics too time-sensitive, if you require your ‘rainy day’ fund for later, rather than sooner. Keep a list of your thoughts. You’d be surprised how often you can forget a brilliant idea if you don’t record it. Listen to followers and consumers; they’ll tell you what they want. On social media they leave comments. Read these and let the feedback, both positive and negative, guide your future content.

The algorithms favor consistency, and part of maintaining your audience is ensuring followers know when to expect something new. If you release new content on Monday and Friday, then do that consistently. Even consider letting subscribers know you’ll be going away on vacation for a week. If your content isn’t seeing sufficient returns, consider taking a hard look at its appeal from an audience-centered perspective.

Coleman: What’s the key to going viral?

Mandell: Firstly, you don’t need to go viral to have a successful social media presence. The key is engagement, not the number of views or your follower count. The more people engage with your content, the farther along you are in creating a community of supporters who love your brand.

Focus on that. I’d rather have 1,000 followers who engage with me all the time than 500,000 who never comment. People want to do business with someone they feel connected to, and social media provides you with that opportunity. A tight-knit audience that has ‘buy-in’ will do more for you than a huge passive following.

When it comes to creating viral content, the keys are to innovate, engage with followers, produce solid material, and release it on a consistent schedule. Most importantly, persist. One of the quickest ways to fail involves assuming you’ll strike gold, failing to do so, and quitting. Building a following on social media can be a grind. Luck does indeed play a role. But the longer you push, the luckier you are bound to get.Coleman: What are the common social media mistakes made by startups and small businesses, and how can they be corrected?

Mandell: Don’t develop a persona and try to perform. Be genuine. People respond to authenticity. And don’t bandwagon. If you just echo what everyone else is already saying, then you’ll get lost in the shuffle. Most people can tell you are just fishing for likes or followers. Instead, create a purposeful brand and stick to it, even when others shift in another direction. People can change their minds overnight, and they might switch back before you know it. Your consistency will beget their trust.

Be careful what you say. What you put online stays there. This goes for private messages, which someone could screenshot and share on multiple platforms. Finally, long-form content is popular – but only if you have a base audience that wants it. If not, short means short. If it’s not essential to post, remove it.

I’m a freelance journalist, founder of Coleman Media. For the last 20 years I’ve covered business stories for national and international online and

Source: The Secrets Of A Successful Social Media Strategy For Startups

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More Than 40% Of Companies Say Workers Have Asked For Higher Pay To Offset Inflation. Few Have Revised Salary Budgets

Inflation may be hitting new 40-year highs, but less than a quarter of U.S. organizations say they are revising their salary budgets due to inflation—despite many workers asking for raises or other actions to cope with higher prices, according to a new survey.

Mercer, the human resources consulting firm, surveyed more than 300 U.S. employers in March and found that 45% do not factor inflation into salary budgets. Less than 25% say they are making changes to their salary budgets because of inflation—yet 42% say workers have been asking them to take financial actions to help with rising costs.

Still, the survey found that nearly half of organizations say they will conduct additional salary reviews for either some or all of their employees as a response, a sign some may be growing concerned about losing workers if they don’t take action. A full 77% said dissatisfaction with pay or an offer of higher wages at another firm were the top reason they were seeing turnover among their ranks.

“Organizations are being cautious about setting a practice of paying primarily based on cost of living, as opposed to cost of labor,” Tauseef Rahman, a partner at Mercer, said in an email about the new survey data. He was referring to the way many employers make decisions about compensation, determining what people with certain job titles in specific regions are typically paid.

He’s not surprised by the disconnect between what employees are requesting and what employers have done so far in response. As Rahman says, “the concern is that organizations can create the expectation that pay is entirely based on cost of living, and not based on the cost of labor which has more to do with availability and demand of talent.” One challenge, he says, is that employers “might not have been clear with candidates and employees as to … [how] pay was being set.”

At the same time, Mercer’s survey also finds that 50% of organizations say they’re paying more than market rate due to the challenges they face finding and keeping employees, and 41% say they are implementing some kind of retention bonus.

Meanwhile, 60% of respondents reported seeing an increase in the number of counter-offers candidates are receiving, and about 30% say they are beating or matching counter-offers.

Josh Bersin, a human resources industry analyst, says he’s hearing from companies that inflation is having an impact. “Everyone I talk to is going through this re-evaluation, saying ‘you know what, we’ve got to add more money. We’ve got to reset salaries more often to adjust,’” he says.

“There’s a saturation point—you can’t compete based entirely on wages,” Bersin says. “But we’re at the point right now [of people saying] ‘I will not work for you unless you can pay me more money.’ So there’s this stair-stepping process going on, [where] everybody’s raising their wages a tiny bit at a time.”

“There’s this stair-stepping process going on, [where] everybody’s raising their wages a tiny bit at a time.”

—Josh Bersin, human resources industry analyst

Bersin thinks the Department of Labor’s data may be a little behind what’s happening within employers’ payrolls. Consumer prices rose 7.9% in the 12 months that ended in February, according to data the Labor Department released last week. At the end of the fourth quarter of 2021, the U.S. employment cost index showed that compensation costs for civilian workers increased 1% for the three-month period ending in December 2021, with wages and salaries increasing 4.5% last year.

While that is a two-decade high, Bersin thinks “wages are probably going up faster than the federal government realizes,” he says. One human resources executive he spoke with recently told him “we’ll issue a job offer on Monday, they’ll accept the job on Thursday … [and] they don’t show up. Over the weekend they got a job for 50 cents more an hour. It’s just that fast.”

Some companies are finding other ways to provide more compensation to people. For instance, Jonathan Johnson, Overstock.com’s CEO, says his company issued stock to a broader group of employees. The company’s research shows it is above the national average on pay in the markets where they compete for talent, Johnson says.

“You can’t spend your equity at the gas station, but it can help you create wealth and it maybe helps you save,” he says. The company also did not increase what employees pay for medical and dental benefit premiums this year.

Rahman says that where companies are offering raises due to inflation, they tend to be “targeted adjustments” that are based on things such as the competitiveness of pay, an individual’s performance, or business needs. Just “like inflation is complex and not a single number for everyone, pay adjustments are similarly complex.”

I am a Senior Editor at Forbes, leading our coverage of the workplace, careers and leadership issues. Before joining Forbes, I wrote for the Washington Post for more than a decade…

Source: More Than 40% Of Companies Say Workers Have Asked For Higher Pay To Offset Inflation. Few Have Revised Salary Budgets.

.

Critics:

By Stephen Miller, CEBS

Employee demands are driving changes in compensation strategy as employers respond to labor shortages and surging inflation, new research shows. Pay data and software firm Payscale’s 2022 Compensation Best Practices Report reveals that 85 percent of organizations are concerned about rising inflation eroding the value of pay increases.

The survey gathered responses from management-level decision-makers at 5,578 organizations, mostly based in North America, from November 2021 to January 2022.

In January 2022, inflation was 7.5 percent higher compared to a year earlier—a 40-year high. The unprecedented jump in inflation rates has 85 percent of organizations worried that planned 2022 pay increases won’t be enough. At the same time, 76 percent of organizations faced labor shortages or difficulty attracting talent in 2021, and 49 percent said that voluntary turnover had increased compared to previous years.

The survey also highlights which benefits have become more common, such as:

  • A 25 percent increase for remote-work options (now being offered by 65 percent of surveyed employers).
  • An 8.3 percent increase in work-from-home stipends (offered by 15 percent).
  • A 7.7 percent increase for flex-time options (offered by 37 percent).
  • A 7 percent increase in mental health or total wellness programs (offered by 66 percent).

In addition, 40 percent of organizations said they were interested in location-based pay strategies with geographic differentials to determine pay for widely distributed workforces.

More contents:

Wages and Salaries Up 5% for Private Industry Workers in 2021, Less than Inflation

Revised 2022 Salary Increase Budgets Head Toward 4%

Turbulence Ahead: Will 2022 Break Compensation Budgets?

Surging Gas Prices Take a Bigger Bite out of Workers’ Wages

DOL Issues Guidance on Prohibited Retaliation Under FLSA and FMLA

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Six Tips To Retain Key Employees And Prevent High Turnover Rates

High turnover is a nightmare for HR personnel and the owner of a company. The loss of a valuable employee can be detrimental to growth. Not only can the loss lead to lower productivity, but it can also cost the company financially.

According to the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, in July 2021, about 4 million people quit their jobs and about 10.9 million positions were declared open. This year, the UK reported an employee deficiency that has had a crippling effect on its economy. In the tech industry, managers have said that the increase in turnover is at an all-time high.

As a business owner, when employee turnover is high, it is time to re-evaluate the business. You first have to determine why your employees are leaving before you know how to stop it. Some of those reasons could be a lack of one or more of the following: flexibility, support, growth, appreciation, vision and engagement.

There are many reasons why your employees could decide to leave your company. Now while one or two employees leaving may seem negligible, a large number of employees, especially important ones, is cause for alarm. Here are a few strategies you can implement to help prevent high turnover rates.

1. Have flexible work options.

One thing many individuals have realized since the pandemic hit is that they can have flexible work hours and still be productive. According to a report by Beqom (download required), over 70% of American workers would take a job with flexible working hours over a higher-paying one. Flexibility does not have to be in the number of hours alone. It may also be start time, vacation days or day-to-day regulations in the organization, among other things.

Most employees do not want to work in a harsh environment where rules are set in stone with no possibility of flexibility whatsoever. Rules in the workplace are important to ensure that everything runs properly; however, when the rules are too rigid, employees can start to feel smothered.

2. Offer your employees support.

Many employees value empathy in their employer and will likely seek out and stick with an employer that cares about their well-being as a person instead of just the value they add to the company. Ask your employees what area of their job they find unnecessarily taxing and how you can make it easier on them; an immediate solution may not be possible but making an effort is the first step. This could also help solve or prevent burnout. And according to a Microsoft report, 54% of employees say they are overworked.

Support employees in learning a new skill for their current role — it would ultimately serve both you and the employee. While it’s almost impossible to solve all the problems of your employees, offering support goes a long way.

3. Help employees reach their career goals.

This is one of the main reasons employees leave. If they feel as though they are not growing in their careers, they could be tempted to look elsewhere. An organization that promotes career-driven goals can help employees achieve those goals to the benefit of everyone involved.

If an employee is steadily growing at an organization and they see a good prospect for them there, they are less likely to move on. Help your employees attain this by creating avenues for growth; this includes networking programs, seminars, mentoring opportunities and so on.

4. Acknowledge and appreciate your employees.

A good way to motivate your employees is to always acknowledge when someone does a great job. Everyone wants to be recognized for their hard work, and if an employee isn’t feeling appreciated, it could cause them to consider leaving your company. Believe it or not, many employees value this more than salary. Appreciate employees when they do a good job in the way that most suits them.

5. Communicate your vision.

No one wants to work at an organization that doesn’t have a clear vision or is left out of the loop. As employees grow, your business must also grow in scope. Have a clear vision for the future of your business, and be committed to communicating it. Feelings of being left in the dark, or low/poor communication in general, can make employees consider leaving. Employees can’t share in your vision if it doesn’t exist or is unclear.

6. Involve your employees.

No matter how good you are at running a business, not seeking your team’s input before making decisions could have devastating effects. When all the decisions are made without the input of employees, the work environment starts to feel like a dictatorship where ideas and input are not welcome. This can lead to employees moving to other companies where they feel like their opinion matters. Involve relevant stakeholders for each decision where it’s appropriate; there’s a balance to strike between stalling all decisions and authoritarian management.

As an HR professional or a business owner, you can help prevent high employee turnover or keep that star employee happy by keeping the above tips in mind. The most important thing is to recognize dissatisfaction in your staff and react in a timely way to offer solutions so they can continue being an active and productive member of your staff.

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Marketing Consultant/Franchise Owner of Sylvan Learning Center of Murrieta, CA. Read Chastity Heyward’s full executive profile here.

Source: Six Tips To Retain Key Employees And Prevent High Turnover Rates

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