The Busyness Paradox

Take This Job and Shove It

July 08, 2021 Frank and Paul Season 1 Episode 17
The Busyness Paradox
Take This Job and Shove It
Show Notes Transcript

It's April 2021. We've spend the past 15 months in a global pandemic. Unemployment rates are staggeringly high. What do you do? If you're like 4 million Americans, you quit your job!

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Articles, People, and Products Mentioned:

LA Times - Summer of Quitting

CNBC - 1 in 4 Workers Considering Quitting

Book - The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

Paul Harvey, Frank Butler

Frank Butler  00:00
Hello Busybodies, welcome to another episode of the Busyness Paradox. I'm Frank Butler here with Paul Harvey.

Paul Harvey  00:06
Good day.

Frank Butler  00:07
On today's episode, we're going to cover something that's fascinating to us: the record number of people who are just quitting their jobs

Paul Harvey  00:17
at a time of record unemployment.

Frank Butler  00:19
Isn't that just phenomenal?

Paul Harvey  00:21
paradoxical, it's what that is 

Frank Butler  00:23
Paradoxical, right? Not only do we have record unemployment, but we have record numbers of people quitting their jobs. I mean, what was it 3.9 million people are planning on quitting their jobs. 

Paul Harvey  00:24
The most recent numbers I saw were something like 40% of American workers are planning to quit based on...was it a Gallup poll or the next few months, and the 3.9 million was that the numbers for April that actually did quit their jobs?

Frank Butler  00:49
I think I mean, it was something like that. It's incredible. The numbers we're seeing, what is it the Gallup polls have been tracking this, no it was the Bureau of Labor Statistics have been tracking these numbers about intentions of the quit and such, and actually, people who are quitting, and we are looking down the barrel of the highest numbers they have ever seen. And it's just really incredible to think that we're seeing all this going on, at a time that we still feel uncertain.

Paul Harvey  01:17
I credit our podcast for that.

Frank Butler  01:21
Considering the topics that we've talked about, and sort of our stance on this whole entire thing, right. I mean...

Paul Harvey  01:25
I'm just saying, you know, but seriously, I do feel weirdly sort of happy to hear this, you know, during the pandemic, it was kind of like, hold your ground and see what happens. But as things are sort of returning to normalcy, it's nice to see people taking stock of how they want their life to be workwise. And, and, and in other ways, going forward and saying that, you know, "I don't want the old normal to be the new normal again, I want to do things differently. And if my boss or my employer doesn't want to play ball, go somewhere else, do something else."'s refreshing to see that.

Frank Butler  02:02
Yeah, I mean, it's amazing in these stories that you're hearing about what people are doing, right. For example, there's one here that that is one of these articles is an Axios article and said an insurance broker and her restaurant manager husband both left their jobs, because they wanted to go and spend more time outside, and they started a landscaping business. That's phenomenal. Right? So it forced them to become more entrepreneurial in a sense, which, you know, I love it.

Paul Harvey  02:27
Didn't force them, but encourage them to be more entrepreneurial. 

Frank Butler  02:31
Yeah. I mean, exactly. And that is phenomenal. Here. Another one a person said a cruise ship staffer, trained and pivoted to work in a data center because the pandemic displayed the volatility that happens in that industry. And so they wanted something a little bit more stable. That's also perfectly understandable.

Paul Harvey  02:50
Very fascinating. It's all about aligning the job characteristics with your personal psychology and personality. And some people want more stability. Some people want more adventure, to each their own.

Frank Butler  03:01
Right. Yeah, I mean, that's it right, to each their own. Very incredible stuff.

Paul Harvey  03:04
And I've seen a number of fun stories about the manner in which people are leaving their jobs. Mostly, it's boring stuff. But this this rage-quitting phenomenon is something that I, you know, I probably shouldn't find as humorous as I do. But there's one of the stories that's been in the news a bit actually happened not too far from where I am here, over in Elliot, Maine. Seems like it was dollar store, I think, Dollar General. And it seems like this has been happening quite a lot at dollar stores. And it's something you and I have talked about in the past is the problematic aspects of a lot of these dollar store companies. But apparently, at this location in Maine of Dollar General, a group of employees just collectively decided all at once that you know, this is nonsense. And they put a bunch of thank you notes on the door to thank the customers, we're out. Seems usually, it's kind of a fun way to go out and in style.

Frank Butler  04:02
And that's going on, you know, in little pockets in a lot of places too. It's is not just unique to that. There's other places that the same things going on, right?

Paul Harvey  04:10
Like fast food restaurants, someone put a sign up at a McDonald's saying something like, I think I was on the drive thru speaker, like "sorry, we're closed because I quit" or something like that. 

Frank Butler  04:19
Oh my gosh, that's awesome. That's a meme in its own right. You know, you think about that phenomenon going on right now too. If you haven't noticed, McDonald's has yet to really open up there inside. Right. They've kind of been pushing and staying all drive thru. And I actually heard the other day is because 70% of their business was drive thru before the pandemic. So why would you let people in right because you have to maintain that interior you have to clean it. You know, there's so much more complexities going on when they have an in store operation because at that people handling orders in and out and I don't think people missed a beat with McDonald's. They're still going and they're still driving through. Very interesting phenomenon happening there. 

Paul Harvey  04:57
And I wonder if that relates to what we talked about couple episodes back, the challenge that a lot of companies are having, trying to fill these frontline positions. 

Frank Butler  05:06

Paul Harvey  05:07
I wonder if that's...If you're gonna open up the inside of the McDonald's, you need more people, cleaning tables, emptying the trash cans doing all the stuff you do inside a restaurant. I wonder if that has anything to do with it also?

Frank Butler  05:17
I would bet it does, right. I mean, right now, there's been people who are unwilling to return to the jobs, either because of the extra money that they're getting in unemployment. But I think a lot of people are also realizing that they don't want to do those kinds of jobs, because they can get more money in another place, too. I mean, Walmart's been paying more,

Paul Harvey  05:35
they don't want to do those kinds of jobs for those kind of wages.

Frank Butler  05:39
Right, right. I mean, I know Walmart's not the best employer at the end of the day, either. But I mean, they are starting to pay more. They do provide benefits. I mean, I walked into the Walmart the other day, and it's like they were offering a 401k health benefits and money towards tuition. I was like, holy cow. That's different. 

Paul Harvey  05:54
Yeah, and you know, I'm glad you brought that up. I hadn't thought about this before. But when we were talking about this, in the crap jobs episode, we were tackling the argument that people weren't returning these jobs, primarily because of the unemployment benefits that are available at the time, and mostly still are. But this quitting phenomenon. All these people quitting right now, this point in history, it's June 17 as we're recording this, 2021 the writing's kind of on the wall for those federal unemployment benefits. No one's gonna be quitting your job right now. Because I wouldn't think they're thinking, "Oh, I'll just make, you know, decent enough money collecting unemployment," like everyone knows that those benefits, their days are numbered.

Frank Butler  06:38
Many states have already ended them right. Tennessee being one Florida and Georgia, I think have also ended their extra benefits. 

Paul Harvey  06:43
Alaska, I think, also. So we're seeing this quitting, in spite of the fact that those are going away. I think that adds further doubt, to the argument that this is just a matter of people being lazy and deciding that they'll just take unemployment instead. 

Frank Butler  06:57
Yeah, and there's other things going on. People are rage quitting 

Paul Harvey  07:01
The rage quitting, 

Frank Butler  07:01
which I mean, that has its own side altogether. 

Paul Harvey  07:05
We should do a separate episode just on rage quitting.

Frank Butler  07:08
Yeah, we probably should. Paul give him an example of rage quitting before we 

Paul Harvey  07:11
Let me see...anything. I tried to rage quit once. And I failed. That's not something I'm terribly proud of.

Frank Butler  07:19
My gosh, I hate this job. Take it and I'll be back tomorrow!

Paul Harvey  07:23
You know, basically yeah, me in a co-worker, this was a long time ago, went and told our boss - we were painting houses back then - said, "You know what? We quit. And here's the reasons why. Goodbye." And our boss gets in his car, says "Fine! Slams his door. Opens his door. Comes back out and says, "Come on, guys, I really need you to not quit, what can I do?" Now, I was so excited to be quitting this job. And the poor guy just seemed so pathetic in that moment that both of us, we cracked. All right. And we, you know, ended up making a deal for, I don't know, slightly more money and something. But that was my one attempt at rage quitting was.

Frank Butler  08:03
I've had moments where I felt like rage quitting. I'm one of those people that like inside, like, I get that. Screw you. Yeah. But then externally, I'm like, I will never do that. Because I'm afraid of what the outcome might actually be.

Paul Harvey  08:15
It's probably for the best. Burning bridges and all that kind of stuff. But yeah, yeah, there's a lot of these. I'm just thumbing through some of the recent examples. I've found a lot of them are from fast food. And a lot of them are people putting signs on the drive thru speaker saying, like, this is one from Wendy's here, says "we all quit!" Closed. Bye everyone. All happy like, "Hey! We quit!"

Frank Butler  08:43
Well I get it. I mean,

Paul Harvey  08:45
I mean, that's wild.

Frank Butler  08:47
I mean, there's only so much people can take, especially after you sort of seeing what's happened in the pandemic, right? There's a certain sense of time that you get I feel to really reflect upon what that past year has done. You know, there's a lot of horrible aspects that came from the pandemic. But I think a lot of this is being triggered by the positives in a lot of ways, like people are realizing that they want to have life and they're choosing life. I believe even the quote was in some here, yeah. So there's Professor Klotz over at Texas A&M, this came out of LA Times article by Sam Dean. And he said, people have had epiphanies over the past year. We all we all want to pursue life, liberty and happiness. And many of us have realized our job isn't the best way to get there. And that's fascinating, right? Because we always try to say, Oh, you know, money doesn't buy happiness. But people were like, "Well, no, but you have the money to buy the things that make people happy, right?" And there's all those kind of paradoxes or hypocrisy or whatever you want to turn them at the end of the day. And here we see it happening as a result of this. Really fascinating, I feel.

Paul Harvey  09:51
I heard a quote this morning...trying to look up the source of it...but it was something to the effect of achievement without happiness is failure or something like that? Yeah, maybe you make lots of money and have a lot of prestige and stuff. But if you're miserable, and you hate your job, what's it all been for? So I feel like there's been kind of a cultural awakening coming out of the pandemic, people, like you said, actually realizing the truth to that statement, you know, like, the Beatles said, You can't buy can't buy love. It's, we've all we all talk the talk, but people are actually walking the walk these days. I'm excited to see that.

Frank Butler  10:29
It's, it's good, right? It's healthy. I think there's a healthy aspect to this. And I think we're gonna see some cultural momentum behind this as a whole, right? Yep. A couple other things from this professor clots that I really liked. He said that there are some companies actually trying to shift to offering month long sabbaticals to avoid burnout. And other companies are offering more flexible work from home arrangements, just to retain people. 

Paul Harvey  10:52
And we've been saying all along this whole, our show has existed entirely in the... during the pandemic. Since day one, we've been saying that flexibility coming out of this is going to be a key thing to retaining employees.

Frank Butler  11:03
Key thing and it continues to be. And the other thing that we're seeing, and I think this is not good, right, and this is women are...women, mothers working mothers are leaving both the frontline and senior leadership positions in high numbers. And I believe it actually said record numbers in one of these articles. And that is one of those areas that you know, women have worked so hard to break through the glass ceilings, and to have careers themselves. And you know, we're trying to fix the salary and balance issues that are in the system that we continue to see so many things there. And yet, it seems that that strain from having to work and you know, deal with the childcare, the burden still falls more often than not on the mother. You know, I see this as a sad thing. Like I step back and wait, but I think there are truth to this, too, is like people are quitting, these women are quitting partially to because they realize that the work isn't as important as the family. Right? You know, and they're saying they're willing to work some, but they'd rather spend the time with their families.

Paul Harvey  12:04
They don't want the 40 hour locked in, quote, unquote, full time job, willing to take a pay cut and do maybe 30 hours a week. Right, which, again, we've been saying all along, you know, there's nothing sacred about that 40 hour number.

Frank Butler  12:17
And that's the thing those like, Why Why take that pay cut. I mean, people were saying that they would work less and take a pay cut to work less. But at the end of the day, it's like, why? They're getting their job done, again-

Paul Harvey  12:27

Frank Butler  12:27
That's one of the things that we say, we've got to learn to focus on the output, and not simply on time spent. It is it is a red herring or whatever false flag or whatever you want

Paul Harvey  12:40
A straw man argument.

Frank Butler  12:41
It's a straw man or something

Paul Harvey  12:43
whatever, something.

Frank Butler  12:45
So you know, and again, we've been touching on there a lot of the reasons as to why we're seeing this all go on, obviously, I think from a psychological standpoint, again, this is something that I actually didn't really think about. And it sort of makes sense is that people apparently, from a research standpoint, one of our fundamental needs as human beings is the need for autonomy, again, going back to Texas A&M and Professor Klotz here. But employers demanding a return to in person work are asking us to give up this fundamental need, we've had satisfied during the pandemic by working at home. I mean, I, you know, I never really thought about it like that. I've been fortunate to be in this career that Paul and I are in where we do have a lot more autonomy, me we kind of have our own, quote unquote, entrepreneurs. In a sense, it's like we're responsible for our success or failure, even though we work for the university, you know,

Paul Harvey  13:38
Which is partly what drove us into this line of work was the desire for that level of autonomy. 

Frank Butler  13:44

Paul Harvey  13:44
Like you said, a lot of other people realize that, hey, this autonomy thing. It's not so bad.

Frank Butler  13:49
I mean, you think about it from a knowledge worker's perspective, right? If we just focus on knowledge workers, the idea of having flexibility allows for creativity, right? I mean, there's a reason why Google has all sorts of activities that they offer on their campuses, for people to go and screw around for a bit, and get their mind off things. It's intentional. There's also a reason why we see companies encourage people to take vacations, because they know that they get more productivity on those people. I think we saw something that was like, you know, companies that actually have three weeks vacation, they tend to be the most productive of the employees, something along those lines.

Paul Harvey  14:23
Who was it that started offering bonuses for employees who actually take their vacations?

Frank Butler  14:28
It was some some company in the Silicon Valley area was...not a bigger company. It was one of the small ones, but they like actually said, we'll give you if you don't use your technology, you know, to check work emails and take phone calls. We will give you like 1500 bucks or pay for your vacation. I mean, they went that far. Yeah, to make you decompress. And so those are the things that are going on. And I mean, if you just look at these little isolated incidences, and then step back and see what's going on today, this is what's going on. This is a reason why people are quitting right? I mean, that need for autonomy that need to have flexibility and that need to detach for a bit and be able to spend time and effort on things that are important. 

Paul Harvey  15:07
And I don't think any of us would have agreed with this at the beginning of the pandemic, but I think what eventually happened was, we sort of found our way into a good blend of autonomy and structure. Sure, we still had jobs. And those jobs still provide some structure. So it's not like we're completely adrift in the world. But we have the autonomy to work within that structure, and do our jobs to varying degrees the way that we want it to, to give folks a taste of that, and then yank it back again, I don't think it's, I don't think that's in the cards. That's what, at least part of what we're seeing here. ,

Frank Butler  15:42
Yeah, I think it's fascinating what we're seeing, you know, and we're seeing these things from people you don't expect even, you know, one of these examples here is that a lot of people don't want to work 40 hours a week anymore, kind of touched on that they want to do 2030. But there are also people who are closer to retirement age, they're saying they could definitely do another 10 years, at 30 hours a week, but not at 40 hours. And from that perspective, you know, these older employees, they got a significant amount of institutional knowledge. And a significant amount of expertise in areas and losing the senior employees can be a massive loss in knowledge, and an institution in an organization. If a company could realize that and be flexible, and say, hey, look, we're going to keep paying you. But your value to the company is there. But yeah, let's make it a you know, descending rate of time spent, right, 30 hours a week are not hours, necessarily, you know, because we don't like the hours. But if you're gonna stick to an hour thing yet, then make it a 30 hour 20 hour 10. Right, and work on having a transition plan to transfer knowledge over that next 10 years. So you're maximizing the well-being of your people, but also making sure there's continuity,

Paul Harvey  16:52
Why don't we do that sort of a gradual phase out, reducing the scope of a job or the number of hours, like you said, it seems like that would make so much sense for so many people, I don't know, and not for nothing. So much of the age discrimination lawsuits and scandals that you hear about are driven by the at least the concern that older employees are often more, they're at their peak expensiveness at the end of their career, so you can hire someone younger in and get the same work done for in theory, less money. So if people were doing this phase out thing, phased, phased in retirement now, it seems like that would solve some problems. For those who wanted it, obviously, not everyone, some people just want to be done. And that's fine, too. Sure. Something to think about. 

Frank Butler  17:36
You know, it's interesting, because you see a lot of companies where CEOs will step down and go remain on the board of directors for a while. Yeah, that's a form of being able to be available for knowledge transfer, or they'll remain on as consultants, quote, unquote, consultants, they'll still be paid on the side. But fellows, you know, their time requirements are different. You know, we do see this happen in certain jobs. But I mean, think about that value creation that could happen in a lot of these other jobs. I mean, as much as I know, for example, about stuff, right? I mean, there's people who've been through things, I've seen things that I haven't. And, you know, even though it's not necessarily applicable to what's going on today, perhaps, yeah, there's still a lesson in there that you could get like, Oh, yeah, when we did it back, then this is what we did. And you're like, Oh, yeah, that triggered an idea of, Okay, this is the approach we have to take. Because, you know, sometimes things don't reinvent the wheel. Sometimes you can take and adapt things to make them work in today's environment,

Paul Harvey  18:29
Our next soapbox we'll get on. Our next cause. 

Frank Butler  18:32
Exactly. I think there was this other one here that one person said that after working their job, they were afraid of going back. Now what was interesting, I believe they had a 90 day notice to give for their contract for them to get other employment contract, which 90 days is a lot. Yep. But they were like, you know what they put in their 90 days, and they said, life shouldn't be so stressful all the time. And I mean, that's a powerful statement to make.

Paul Harvey  18:57
And, you know, I can, especially right now, as people are, you know, we spent the last year thinking, we're going to get back to normal, and then realize that getting back to normal for a lot of people is life being too stressful all the time, and saying, I don't want that. And I think it's such a healthy thing.

Frank Butler  19:14
You know, it's interesting that that's the perspective taken, because when you think about it, I thought the pandemic itself was kind of stressful, because I was worried about dying and what kind of health implications could be Yeah, dying, you know, there was a lot there. I wasn't just that alone, but certainly the inability to travel and to kind of, for me, decompress like the way I was used to decompressing. And that took some discovery, right, in 15 months of doing that, yeah. It gives you a lot of opportunity to find new outlets, and hobbies and interest, absolutely things that make you happy. And that's a really powerful thing to write. It's like okay, some things were taken away. So we adapted, and that's something that we're really good at now. I harp on this quite a lot. People don't like change inherently. We don't like to change, but we can certainly adapt when change is forced upon us. And so it's kind of funny that we always say, Oh, you know, I don't want to do that, because, you know, those young whippersnappers want to do that, or whatever it might be. But the reality is that it's not all like that. It's really, truly some positives that come from this kind of change.

Paul Harvey  20:18
You know, you look back in your life, and it's rare to say, oh, man, all that change is really bad. Right? Now, this, this one sucked a lot of ways because people died and bad stuff happens. But I've thought for a long time that you're right, there's been a silver lining to this whole thing. And we'd never would have started this podcast if there hadn't been a pandemic. 

Frank Butler  20:37
I don't I don't think so. I mean, as much as I, you know, I wanted to beforehand there was, it was different, right? It was, life was going in different directions and different balls in the air and all that has changed, and it actually provided opportunity. Yeah, I think that's a big one. And here's something else, too. It's, we're hearing this a lot. I've actually heard this myself. This is a quote from somebody who said, I love my company, I love my work. But I couldn't keep pushing on through, I didn't have really any energy, I didn't really enjoy what I was doing any more, I couldn't really focus. That's so powerful, you know. So these are anecdotal stories, but I think they encompass a lot of what a lot of people are feeling out there.

Paul Harvey  21:17
A lot of people can relate to them. And you know, as silly as it sounds, "I should just quit my job" is usually not the response that we come to, when we feel that way. Like I should just do something different with my life, it's just very, almost impossible to do that, without being kind of pushed, in this case, the pandemic pushed a lot of people.

Frank Butler  21:39
And then having to go back to the office. I mean, we saw it the other day, where some of the workers Apple has said that workers have to come back to the office for three days a week, right. And there was a manifesto sent from a group of employees at Apple that were up in arms about this and saying that Apple should be more flexible. And, you know, I it depends on the job in my thought process, right? There's a lot of r&d that goes on in Apple, that does require face to face interactions. It's hard. But again, that comes down to that's the beauty of change, you know, if you can find a job somewhere else, exactly. And you want that flexibility, then yeah, you go find the job that meets your needs, right. And I think that's something that we will say time and time and time again, is companies are going to have to be flexible. But there's a point that some companies can't be flexible, some companies are going to have to require people to be on site based on whatever it is they do. And you know what some people want to work on site, some people want to work on so. And I do think that companies who are involved in certain types of businesses, or have certain types of expectations, are going to need to have people on site. So they can have that focus and culture be imbued on those people on site.

Paul Harvey  22:51
Yeah, it's all about fit. Fit between the type of work you're doing, and the work environment, and fit between bright that environment and the employees that you're hiring. So I think what we're seeing here is a big shifting of people seeking out better fit for themselves.

Frank Butler  23:05
I saw a comment the other day, and I've been thinking for a while now. To HR departments, that they've got a heavy lift ahead of them right now. Because they're gonna have to figure out how do we provide all this type of flexibility. Now, 

Paul Harvey  23:18
They can't without support from the, you know, the senior leadership.

Frank Butler  23:21
And you need senior leadership on board. And that's the other thing, its senior leadership is gonna have to view this and say, how important is it for people to be on campus, versus being able to work remotely or hybrid, or whatever type of work environment they want to provide? And I think the challenge is you've got to do this not in a company-wide type thought process, but rather by department. What makes sense for the departments? You know, I think, for example, customer service, and its phone service, people can do that from home, you can monitor that, you know, they have the software that the calls come through, people answered, you can tap into it to see if they're doing the job correctly, there's quality control aspects. That's an easy one. Why make them come in? And they typically are not usually your higher paid employees, In a lot of cases, right? 

Paul Harvey  24:06
Baking bread, cakes, or something, not so much. 

Frank Butler  24:09
But if your r&d probably has to be on campus, because of the equipment necessary, the interaction of how the teams have to work together, and discover that goes in there. I mean, there's just a lot of moving parts. And so I think this has to be a decision made at a department by department level, and, you know, also in the lifecycle of the company to newer companies. Start up the kind of organizations Yeah, you're gonna have to probably be all hands on deck early. But I mean, I even know, a lot of companies that are starting up that are leveraging this remote environment. And they'll have developing...developers in different cities working for them.

Paul Harvey  24:45
You don't have to invest an office space when you're starting out.

Frank Butler  24:48
Reduce startup costs, yeah, I mean, so I think that's a big aspect that we got to look at some of the stuff we've already seen in there too. Pay wages in line with the value of the work

Paul Harvey  24:57
As we discussed in the crab jobs episode. That's been exposed by this as well, that, you know, we've talked in this episode a lot about knowledge work and that kind of thing. But on the low end of the pay scale, they don't want to return to the old version of normal either, which was do hard, often dangerous work for just barely enough to support themselves. So they're not. 

Frank Butler  25:21
They're not. And that's another thing is people use examples all the time. And I've heard the argument, oh, you increase people's wages, the cost of the goods are going to go up. 

Paul Harvey  25:29
That's assuming perfect efficiency, like there's no other fat to be trimmed anywhere else in the in the organization. 

Frank Butler  25:36
Right. Yeah, that's rarely the case. And I mean, I've heard a lot of people quitting out of these places, because their managers are just absolutely horrible. And that's got to change, right? I mean, these are people, these are human beings. And sure, you might hire somebody, that's a piece of work in their own right, as an employee, but you can't just treat everybody like they're all trash, or replaceable, expendable,

Paul Harvey  26:02
And it's brutal, man. My time in fast food was a long time ago and almost every manager and everyone that I worked with was great. But there were a few, that their management style was tear people down. Like that's, I think that's just...they just assumed that's what managers did. I don't know. And I mean, they would just be brutal to you, and I'm making a minimum wage here man. Why should I listen to...why should I put up with that? But I did when it happened, it wasn't a common constant thing but you know, not everyone's that lucky. Some people have to put up with managers like that all the time for minimum wage, and good for them for saying no more 

Frank Butler  26:41
And not just minimum wage. I mean, we see it at higher paying jobs to mean that the data out there says most people quit not because of the company, but because of the managers. And it's because you get those managers, so for managers, look at yourself, you know, look at how you talk to people look at how you work with your employees, I think one of the best things you can do as a manager is be there to help remove obstacles, so your employees can be successful. I think the number one roadblock for a lot of managers is that they're too concerned that their people are going to get promoted past them that they're better than they are. If you develop those people, nobody's gonna look at you and say, You were bad, they're gonna go Holy crap, you can develop talent.

Paul Harvey  27:18
Especially if you can develop talent where maybe others don't always see it. I think that's a common mentality, also, that employees are just viewed as on the whole hopeless individuals that just need to be bullied into doing anything. And you treat people like that, and that's how they're gonna react. 

Frank Butler  27:33
I couldn't agree more. That's the thing, right is you want, you got to approach this. Now I gotta step back, because I just saw something that we didn't cover in this kind of a counterintuitive thought. And I wanted to grab this in here before we wrap up in here in a minute. And it's who wants to go back to the office. So we know the executives want to go back, JPMorgan executives, for example, have been just chomping at the bit to get people back in the office, they've been saying it, I think Paul and I have kind of disagreed with their approach to it, because we think they haven't provided the right structure for, you know, a remote work environment. But at the same time, the other interesting categories, the Gen Z, wants to return back to the office. Now, if you don't know, in Poland, I don't like these kind of monitors that much. But at least it gives you sort of a framework, these Gen Z workers, the ones who are 

Paul Harvey  28:20
Young adults, yeah

Frank Butler  28:21
Newer into the workforce, they're in the workforce for a couple years now. And they are entering into the workforce, they're most likely to want to return the office, because they're afraid of missing out on professional development opportunities working remotely. Now, that's both good and bad and sad, right? Because could that be an implication that the expectations are so high to be in the office? Because that's where people get noticed. And so if you're doing remote work, you're not being properly evaluated or incentivized or developed? Which I think that's the case, right? It's that organizations haven't done enough to create these structures and programs around developing and training and all those things that go with what you do on campus with remote workers.

Paul Harvey  29:04
I think they're a lot closer to that than they were a year ago. You know, one of our very first episodes, we I think we talked a bit about this, and how at that time, people had been hired out of college, and were starting work and had never actually met anyone at their companies in, in person. And at that time, no one had really foreseen that possibility. So there was just nothing in place for them. I think by and large A year later, there's a long way to go. But there's at least some structure there now, whereas a year ago, there was virtually none. 

Frank Butler  29:35
Yeah, we've learned a lot, right. We've learned techniques, we've learned different things. I mean, what we talked about with David, for example, last episode, that idea of having, you know, coffee session with your employees for 30 minutes, once a week. Those are all little things that can be done,

Paul Harvey  29:52
It would make me quit because I can't stand coffee.

Frank Butler  29:55
Well, remember he did say bring whatever beverage you want.

Paul Harvey  29:57
that's true 

Frank Butler  29:58
because that's the flexibility you get from being at home. Obviously, there's other benefits of flexibility to reducing commute time, or allowing people to move to different parts of the country that might align more with their cost of living they're looking for or their interests, or whatever it might be. And I mean, I think about this in a lot of different layers, right? People who have to take care of older parents, but they're too far away, because they're working in New York City and their families in Idaho or something like that. I mean, this stuff happens, well, how great would it be if they could just move home for a little bit to take care of their aging, family, parents, and work remotely and still have that comfort and support that they're having a job, and then, you know, once things settle back down again, if they want to go back, they can or they can move somewhere else that might be best for them and their families.

Paul Harvey  30:41
You might hold on to some talent that you would otherwise have to lose for fault of your own, just because of those types of external circumstances.

Frank Butler  30:50
Right. And there might be unexpected gains from this too, right? New areas of business that you might not have been aware of some trends that you might not have been aware of, because you're so isolated to a certain area. Yeah, all of a sudden, you have new perspective kicking up all around you because you've got people in different communities, and seeing different things going on and other potential customer. I mean, it does change the dynamics drastically. If you do this, right, if you look at this as an opportunity versus a threat, and I think a lot of companies are viewing this as a threat.

Paul Harvey  31:16
That's a good point. All the things you want to get out... 

Frank Butler  31:20

Paul Harvey  31:21
Yeah, I'm not...that's a whole other rabbit hole, we'll dive down another time. But that's a good point that I hadn't thought of before. 

Frank Butler  31:26
And I think it's something that will we will definitely cover on another episode.  

Paul Harvey  31:30

Frank Butler  31:30
And then the last one is our favorite.  Let go of the 40-hour frickin’ workweek

Paul Harvey  31:32
Yep. You know, this whole turn of events that we've been talking about has, you know, proven that everything we've said on the show is 100% right. 

Frank Butler  31:41
What do we know? 

Paul Harvey  31:41
But especially that one, especially that 40 hour thing. What do we know, yeah. My opinion is that it's confirmed every word we've ever uttered on the show. Especially that.

Frank Butler  31:51
Yup, it's the time for change. It's the time for change. Now, the momentum is there. What we're seeing is,

Paul Harvey  31:58
Let's not...let's not lose this opportunity.

Frank Butler  32:01
We're seeing people quit because of the very stuff that we've been saying needs to be done. Don't lose good people.

Paul Harvey  32:07
Yeah, those who aren't doing it 

Frank Butler  32:08
Yeah, It's time for change. Again, you know, there's caveats. But for the most part, it's time for senior leadership to really look at themselves, look at the organizations and say, Can we offer remote work? Can we offer hybrid type work environments? Can we offer full remote? What kind of flexibility can we offer? And let's start mapping that out. And how do we make that work and make people who do choose to work remotely feel the same as people who are on campus, or office. "Office-ism" idea, right? You got to make sure that they're all feeling like they're part of the team. And that no one person is advantaged just because of their location. 

Paul Harvey  32:42
That's...that's the tricky part.

Frank Butler  32:44
So with that, folks-

Paul Harvey  32:45
With that, I have one more thing to say because I completely butchered that quote earlier, and I want to get it right. The quote was, "success without fulfillment is failure." And that came from Darren Hardy author of The Compound Effect. I don't know if you've ever read that book, it's pretty good. 

Frank Butler  33:02
So, say it again? 

Paul Harvey  33:03
"Success without fulfillment is failure." 

Frank Butler  33:06
And on that note  

Paul Harvey  33:07
Good day

Frank Butler  33:08
'till next time

Paul Harvey  33:10
The Busyness Paradox is distributed by Paul Harvey and Frank Butler. Our theme music is adapted from its business time by Jemaine Clements and Bret McKenzie. Our production manager is Justin Wuntaek. We hope you enjoyed this episode. And we'd love to hear from you. Please any questions, comments or ideas for future episode topics to input at Busyness, or find us on Twitter. Also, be sure to visit our website, busynessparadox dot com to read our blog posts and for links to the articles and other resources mentioned in today's show. Finally, please take a moment to rate and follow or subscribe to our show on Apple podcasts, Spotify, I-Heart Radio, Google podcasts, or your preferred podcast provider.