Apply the same logic to the preference of where to work. If a survey says 51% of people think hybrid is a good idea, then it is true that hybrid is the option that would be preferable to most people. Are your employees in that 51% or the other 49%? How about you talk to them instead of relying on some study that tells you what most employees want? Your team might not be “most” people. They each have individual values and priorities. Do you know what they are?
Take a hard look at what leaders are saying about layoffs and what they focus on. Do they seem personally hurt and concerned for the people leaving? Do they have honest and transparent explanations for why they made these decisions? Or do they repeat platitudes about “recession,” costs, and other bits of financial jargon to explain away something so painful to the same people they were calling part of the family a week ago?
Families don’t cut the number of kids when money gets tight. Your workplace is not a family and does not deserve a level of commitment that matches your family or your health. Layoffs are sometimes necessary, but mostly just a nice tool to perk up the value of a company for a specific part of the structure or to make up for mistakes made by the same people making these job cuts.
That’s business. I’ve argued for years that business has a vested interest in employee well-being. Caring about your people is how you get their best. I hope leaders will continue to grow in that regard, but as an individual employee, you need to care about yourself more. If your job isn’t meeting your career needs in terms of money, development, or work-life balance, find a better one. You owe them nothing. They pay you to do a job until they decide not to. You owe them that work.
That is all.
Think about it, someone in management who has never learned how to communicate will have a team unaware of what is happening. Leaders who follow the examples of those above them, who’ve created a misogynistic culture, will continue with the same practices. When things don’t go smoothly, managers getting berated from above will berate the people below them. And on and on it goes.
If we want a healthier, open, and inclusive workplace, we need to train the people in charge of setting the tone and the culture. All the lunchtime yoga and meditation in the world can’t overcome that shortcoming.
That’s quite a short list of really successful people who all felt the same way you and I feel. Like we don’t really know what we’re doing, or that eventually someone will find out that we don’t belong.
So, the next time you think you don’t belong, remember that you’re in good company with that feeling, and go on anyway.