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The Great Work Transformation | Connection Points | Rainbows and Unicorns

October 15, 2021 Misti Aaronson

The Great Work Transformation


Years ago we did keynotes on the “Future of Work” and then all of a sudden - we were in it. Now we’re living through “The Great Work Transformation”. It’s sort of like “The Great Resignation” meets “The Great Mandate Termination”. Lots of greats - none of which seem super great.

This is creating a lot of movement and as a result interruptions, delays, and new challenges. Here are a few that hit the headlines this last week:

  • 10,000 John Deere workers went on strike to fight “for the ability to earn a decent living, retire with dignity and establish fair work rules.”
  • Northwell Health in NY fired 1,400 of its 77,000 employees for not complying with the vaccine mandates - putting more pressure on an already stressed system.
  • If you had a flight this week there’s a chance you didn’t make it off the ground due to Southwest cancellations. There are mixed reviews on the link between these down planes and vaccine mandates. Either way, the CEO promises not to fire anyone over this.

    While the shakeup is impacting everyone or soon will, it’s certainly affecting leaders as they navigate the uncertainty of the world and carry forward their commitment to leading their organizations through it.

    It’s never been harder to be a good leader. It takes courage, bravery, and an undeniable commitment to withstand the ups and downs and help others do the same. We’ve surveyed hundreds of leaders throughout the pandemic, and one common golden thread exists and it’s called fatigue.

    What can we do to weather this storm and continue leading our companies forward...while emotionally, mentally, and physically exhausted?

    Put the Oxygen Mask on YOU First

    When you’re juggling home, work, employees, investors, and board members, you can’t forget to take care of y-o-u.

    Here are a few health hacks Joe Mechlinski shared in a YPO keynote called “Hacking Other People’s Habits”. Of course, we know we’re not health experts, but we have tried pretty much everything under the sun when it comes to healing, wellness, performance, and longevity hacks.

  • Gut health: Check out ALCAT Food Sensitivity Tests with Dr. Heather Wdowin. You’ll get a list of foods that work (and don’t work) for your body.
  • Sleep: Check out OURA rings, keep your room 65 degrees with ChiliSleep, and wear these blue light glasses when you work.
  • Personal & household products: Toss Out Toxicity will tell you if your products include poison in their ingredients.
  • Neurohack products: Qualia gets an A+ rating from us.
  • Take time off: If you need time for mental health - take it. Sometimes taking the day to read a book or sit out in nature can allow you to deliver more and better once you’re back in action.
  • Reassess priorities: Due to the demands of our lives, we sometimes forget to check in on what’s most important. As a starter, here were the top five regrets from those dying in Bronnie Ware’s book - The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.


    Want access to Joe’s full YPO keynote deck? Email Joe directly at joe@shiftthework.com.


The Five Points of Connection


If we had to boil down what people are lacking the most since transitioning to hybrid work and dealing with the worries of the world - it’s connection.

We’re not talking about the type of connection common in our day like a virtual high five for a job well done or a quick surface level conversation about the weather in the first awkward 3 minutes of a Zoom call.

Leaders should be looking for a level of connection that leaves one changed in some way - and that type of connection is called authentic connection.

Connection isn’t limited to the connection we have with each other - the other points of connection include how we connect with ourselves, our work, manager, and company.

When people are more connected to these five points of connection, the impact can be profound as you can expect higher levels of engagement and lower levels of regrettable attrition. When the lights of connection are lit up, it creates a deeper commitment that is stronger and unwavering especially in the face of adversity and challenge.

Check out these data points for proof:

  • 80% are more engaged when their work is consistent with business values and mission
  • 94% of employees are more likely to stay if they have an empathetic employer
  • Highly engaged teams result in 233% more customer loyalty
  • Employees who feel their voice is heard are 4.6X more likely to perform
  • 83% of people will stay if they can take on new challenges

    Having a great culture pays off - and it’s reflected in topline and bottomline performance metrics.


Join us on Wednesday, October 20th at 2 PM EST for a live session about how to “Put a Stop to Avoidable & Regrettable Turnover”. RSVP to save your spot.

Rainbows and Unicorns


We normally like to keep this last section light and fluffy, so we send our readers into the weekend with some positive vibes.

However this week, it’s a little less rainbows and unicorns and more of a reality check.

Stop the Bullshit!

As a result of The Washington Football team’s workplace investigation, head coach Jon Gruden of the Las Vegas Raiders resigned. Why? Reports emerged of him using homophobic, racist, and misogynistic language in emails.

The attorneys for the 40 former employees of the Washington Football Team, as well as our dear friend Melanie Coburn, are requesting the release of the full findings of the 10-month-long investigation. This includes hundreds of witnesses and 650,000 documents relating to the high-profile case.

Check out Melanie’s interview on MSNBC here. And we’d be remiss not to thank Melanie for using her voice to represent all of the voices that are muted from the lawsuit. You’re a true hero Melanie and represent more of what the world needs right now. Thank you.

And if you want more, SHIFT’s Managing Director Jeff Lesher offered some good nuggets in his What’s the Point Wednesday video - the lesson? If it’s rotten to the core, get rid of the core.

Hot Opportunities - For Humans that Like Cannabis, Agency, and Autonomy

In a final decision by the Brooklyn Nets, all-star Kyrie Irving won’t be allowed to play in practices or games due to his decision not to get vaccinated. There’s been a ton of backlash against Kyrie, but he’s also received support for standing up for what he believes in.

Regardless if you agree with this decision or not, we should be ready for more and more of this to happen as a large population of Americans continues to “hold the line” and say no to forced mandates.

We should also expect that in the face of constraints and adversity, new innovation will come. Check out these companies and job sites that are leveraging human preferences to find niches to solve hiring challenges:

  • LinkedIn for Cannabis Users - Phynally is a job board where you can find a job that doesn’t require drug screenings as a condition of employment. Phynally matches job seekers with transparent employers that no longer uphold outdated policies that date back to the War on Drugs.
  • This social media platform is oriented to people who are looking for work that doesn’t require the jab and had nearly 30,000 members after just two days of launching.
  • Jobs that Guarantee Remote Work - There are many of these popping up. Flexjobs is an example and a great way to score a job that will allow you to do your work from wherever you choose.

    These might not be good job prospects for Kyrie Irving, but might be for some talented Americans that want to work for companies that are aligned with what’s important to them.

ICYMI: Thanks Technical.ly for picking up the Latch Launch! We’re pretty fired up too.

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TOPICS: Workplace Innovation, leadership, stories that shift