Pay, promotion, and benefits have been the traditional carrots for hiring and retaining employees. But what happens when they are not enough? During the Great Resignation, companies have watched well-paid, decorated employees walk out the door. They have watched front-line workers who had just received raises walk. Why? The emotional needs of employees are as critical as their functional needs, says Gabi Novacek, a BCG Henderson Institute fellow researching diversity, equity, and inclusion. Feeling safe, challenged, and valued at work can be even more important than a paycheck. Novacek, an archeologist by training, also discusses how a family medical emergency has shaped her thinking about what really matters at work.
According to our survey, only 22% of workers globally rank compensation as the thing that matters most to them in a job. This isn’t to say that people will accept a job without fair pay: Compensation still ranks higher than all other job attributes. But it’s evident that a coin-operated view of workers, where firm leaders see employment as a purely financial transaction, underestimates the deeper human motivations for work.
In November 2019 Stanford Health Care moved into a new hospital building. With seven stories and 824,000 square feet, the hospital required over a decade and two billion dollars to plan and construct. Most descriptions of the hospital focus on the airy private patient rooms or the state-of-the-art operating rooms, but one of the most technologically sophisticated aspects of the building is found in the basement.
Today, powerful forces are pushing sustainability innovation. Mounting political pressure on corporations, customer demands for climate-friendly products, and record levels of investment in climate tech all play a role. In Europe alone, the climate tech start-up ecosystem is now worth more than $100 billion, having doubled in just two years, according to Dealroom.