Biden’s Green New Deal Is Increasing Greenhouse Gases

Here’s an amazing but true statistic. After more than a decade of declining carbon emissions here in the United States, in 2021, President Joe Biden’s first year in office, emissions rose.

In other words, not only have Biden’s energy policies been a disaster for our economy and national security as we have become more dependent on Russia and Iran, but they haven’t worked as a global warming solution.

To understand the utter futility of Biden’s “renewable energy” crusade, we must go back about 15 years in time to when the amazing shale revolution, thanks to energy pioneers such as Harold Hamm of Oklahoma, the man who drilled the Bakken Shale in North Dakota, began. These new drilling techniques have vastly expanded America’s natural gas production over the past decade and turned America into the world’s leading oil and gas superpower.

Because clean natural gas production soared and replaced coal as the No. 1 source of power generation, not only did America get rich off these bountiful resources but we also reduced our greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, over the six years covering 2014 through 2020, we led the world in our reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. Our emissions fell by 22%. That was more than former President Barack Obama’s cap-and-tax plan would have reduced these emissions.

Ironically, the 10-year trend of declining carbon dioxide emissions actually ended when Biden took office. The conventional explanation for this is that as the economy opened up after COVID-19, emissions rose. People were flying less and driving their cars a lot more.

But that is only part of the story. Iconoclastic environmentalist Michael Shellenberger explains the bigger story:

“In 2021, emissions in the U.S. increased mostly because of increased coal use, *not* because of higher econ growth. Why? Because nat gas became more expensive. Why? Because of inadequate supply. Why? Chronic ‘under-investment in production & pipelines, thanks to ESG & climate activists,'” he wrote recently.

We need to add Biden’s war on fossil fuels to that mix. The Energy Department data confirms that in 2021, coal use rose in the U.S. and natural gas consumption fell. That was because Biden’s Green New Deal agenda made coal a more attractive alternative in terms of costs.

So Biden’s agenda has backfired. More evidence rolls in from the rest of the world. Germany has acknowledged that it will burn more coal in the years ahead to get cheap power. But they aren’t going to get much of it from the U.S. Rather, they’ll get it from China, which has tripled its coal output and doesn’t care at all about whether its increased production will negatively affect the environment. China has among the laxest environmental laws in the world. So none of this is stopping climate change.

China has been one of the biggest winners from the Biden war on energy. The second winner is Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, who is waltzing to the bank. Russia has made $100 billion selling oil and gas to the U.S. and others at inflated prices.

Meanwhile, Biden’s war on coal production at home has led to a more than doubling of the world price of coal, and in some cases, the price increases in Europe have risen tenfold because of mining restrictions.

I don’t oppose coal production, and I believe the environmentalist movement’s crusade against coal as part of our energy mix makes no economic sense. We are simply displacing West Virginia and Pennsylvania coal miners with Chinese mining. We need coal in our energy mix, as even the Germans now admit.

Then there is the collateral damage of $100 billion of lost annual output in the U.S. because of the anti-energy climate change agenda. Again, none of this makes any sense. Why are we sacrificing our own economic opportunities and handing them to China on a silver platter?

Biden, however, could not be bothered to care. At the NATO conference this past week, he chattered about the virtues of windmills and solar panels, as if the U.S. is not experiencing an energy crisis of his own making.

What all this means is that if we want to save our economy from raging inflation and at the same time save the planet, we should be producing all of the U.S. energy we can.

The Squad’s Newest Member Becomes Increasingly Aggressive About SCOTUS

The socialist squad’s newest member in the U.S. House of Representatives, Democrat Jamaal Bowman, continues to lash out after the Supreme Court rule 5-4 to return abortion law to the states. 

In his latest tantrum, Bowman is calling for the impeachment of Supreme Court Justices who voted to overturn Roe v. Wade and claims they broke the law by doing so. 

The Supreme Court is brazenly violating the Constitution, so it’s time to impeach those who have broken the law and expand the court.— Congressman Jamaal Bowman (@RepBowman) July 2, 2022

Instead of doing their job and upholding the Constitution and the rights of the people, SCOTUS decides cases based on their faith and their far-right extremism.— Congressman Jamaal Bowman (@RepBowman) July 5, 2022

SCOTUS’s opinion on overturning Roe v Wade sounded like the Justices were living in the 1800s.

Abortion is healthcare, and it’s a human right.— Congressman Jamaal Bowman (@RepBowman) July 4, 2022

Bowman appears to be following the lead of Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has been apoplectic in the aftermath of the Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling. On Twitter she called it a “judicial coup.” 

At this point we should be well beyond partisanship.

Members of Congress have sworn an oath to the Constitution. It is our duty to check the Court’s gross overreach of power in violating people’s inalienable rights and seizing for itself the powers of Congress and the President.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 30, 2022

Meanwhile, security has been increased for Supreme Court Justices as Democrats continue to descend on their homes.

July 4, 1776: Sacrificing for Freedom

Yesterday we celebrated the 246th anniversary of America’s founding. It came about as an act of Congress. The differences between the Congress of 1776 and 2022 are extraordinary.

Then, Congress had just 56 members. Now, 535. Then, as now, our nation was in the midst of insurrection. On Wednesday, April 19, 1775, British troops fired on American “insurrectionists” in Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts.

Congress sprang into action!

Fourteen months later, June 11, 1776, the Continental Congress met in Philadelphia to decide what to do about British efforts to impose total control over everyone in their 13 American colonies.

Congress appointed a committee and ordered them to draft a secret document. On Wednesday, June 12, 1776, the committee met in a rented room in a boarding house at Market and 7th Streets.

It took the five members of the secret committee 14 days — they didn’t meet on Sundays — to reach agreement on a draft. On Friday, June 28, 1776, they presented their draft to those who set them to their task.

The “committee of the whole” chaired by Benjamin Harrison of Virginia tabled the resolution for editing. In just two days the larger body made 86 changes, eliminating 480 words and leaving 1,337 words.

The evening of July 1, 1776, was hot and steamy. The chairman of the five-man committee sat at the portable desk he designed and built and began preparing what all hoped would be the final version of the document.

Upon the urging of the chairman, he was left alone to complete his work.

On Tuesday morning, July 2, a 33-year-old Virginia farmer delivered his “fair draft” on four pages of parchment. The farmer was Thomas Jefferson, and the body to which he delivered the document was the Second Continental Congress.

These 56 representatives of the 13 colonies resolved that day to declare independence from Great Britain. That night in a letter to his wife, Abigail, committee member John Adams wrote:

“The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade …”

According to the Congressional Record, on July 4, 1776, Benjamin Harrison of Charles City County, Virginia, “delivered to congress a final reading of the document which was unanimously agreed upon.”

The document, of course, is the Declaration of Independence.

To this day it remains the only seminal document of any nation on Earth to pay homage to God Almighty. No founding document for any other nation reflects on “the laws of nature and of nature’s God.” No other proclamation declares all people “are created equal” and “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

No other national manuscript appeals “to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions …” or places the fate of its signers in the hands of God with a prayer like this:

“For the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

Those prayers and pledges were ratified in the U.S. Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787, and the Bill of Rights on Dec. 19, 1791.

Today, in the midst of an insurrection against our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution, “We the People” must elect a Congress willing to sacrifice “selfish” for “selfless.”

Senator Klobuchar Launches New Attempt to Undermine Election Integrity

Democrat U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar from Minnesota is making another attempt at passing Democrats’ plans for sweeping election reform that includes federal control and lax policies that would only undermine election security and Americans’ trust in the integrity of outcomes. 

Klobuchar’s new bill dealing with mail-in ballots comes after Democrat majorities in the House and Senate were repeatedly unable to pass legislation that constituted a federal takeover of the election process and barred states from implementing popular election security measures such as requiring photo identification to vote and ensuring absentee ballots are legitimate. 

Even as a small piece of legislation, Klobuchar’s “Election Mail Act” would similarly be a federal mandate for several policies that run opposite the goal of ensuring secure elections by requiring states to count late mail-in ballots. As it stands now, more than 30 U.S. states and territories require mail-in ballots to be received by election day, dozens of jurisdictions that would have their established election law overturned in the federal takeover if Klobuchar’s legislation becomes law. 

As Axios describes, Klobuchar’s bill “would codify First-Class service standards for all election mail, require the U.S. Postal Service to postmark all ballots and ensure voters and election officials don’t have to pay or pre-pay for postage on ballots.” Ok, fair enough. But buried in these seemingly innocuous changes is something more. 

As a press release on Klobuchar’s official senate website explains, the legislation would also “[r]equire states to count absentee ballots that are postmarked by election day and arrive within 7 day[sic] after the election, while permitting states to have deadlines more than 7 days following the election.”

That means states would be forced to count ballots that arrive, at minimum, seven days following an election as long as they show a postmark before election day — regardless of a state’s existing election law. And, as Axios explains of the latest tactic from the radical left, “in the wake of Congress’ repeated failure to enact sweeping election reform this year, this narrower piece of legislation is an effort to do bite-sized pieces of election administration reform.” 

But, according to Jason Snead — executive director of the Honest Elections Project — Klobuchar’s legislation “should immediately raise a red flag for lawmakers.” Her Election Mail Act “risks delayed election results, fraud, and extensive litigation if passed—all things that harm public confidence,” Snead added. “Accepting late ballots is something most Americans oppose and most states do not do.” 

As Snead also explained, the bill “is yet another ploy by the left to target election safeguards and institute a federal takeover of elections,” something that has long been a goal for Democrats on Capitol Hill. 

“States have been doing a phenomenal job improving voter confidence by making it easier to vote and harder to cheat,” Snead emphasized, referring to election integrity measures passed and signed into law by leaders in Georgia, Texas, and elsewhere. In those states, election turnout has only increased, even in this midterm election year. That’s why, according to Snead, “a mandate to count late ballots would be a massive step in the wrong direction.”

Making sense of why executives are eager to get employees back in the office

After two years, giddy executives appear on the brink of welcoming their workforces back to the office, whether their employees are ready or not.

“I can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to being together again,” Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook told his employees in a memo last week, outlining his company’s April 11 hybrid back-to-work plan.

“I hope everyone is feeling as energized as I am, and that you are looking forward to seeing your colleagues in person again in the weeks ahead,” Comcast’s NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell wrote in a Feb. 22 memo to staff. “This is an exciting time. Our offices are ready for your return across all NBCUniversal locations.”

Even President Joe Biden wrote a letter to federal workers this month telling them to show Americans the time is right to go back to work as Covid cases decline following a dramatic surge fueled by the omicron variant. He broadened his message to all Americans in his March 1 State of the Union address.

“It’s time for Americans to get back to work and fill our great downtowns again,” Biden said. “People working from home can feel safe to begin to return to the office. We’re doing that here in the federal government. The vast majority of federal workers will once again work in person.”

Yet studies show employees aren’t nearly as gung-ho about returning to work.

The Future Forum, developed by workplace-messaging platform Slack, surveyed more than 10,000 workers globally in the summer of 2021 and found an “executive-employee disconnect” with regard to returning to work. Three-quarters of all executives reported they want to work from the office three to five days a week, compared with about one-third of employees. Among executives who have primarily worked completely remotely through the pandemic, 44% said they wanted to come back to the office every day. Just 17% of employees said the same.

Other research suggests employees have been pleasantly surprised by their work-from-home experience and don’t want it to end.

There are several causes for the disconnect, said Brian Elliott, the Future Forum’s executive leader and Slack senior vice president. Many executives simply aren’t experiencing the same lives of their employees and are falling back on an antiquated view of work to make inferences about what’s important for a company to flourish, he said.

“Executives have a better setup at work,” said Elliott. “They probably have an office with a door. They probably don’t have the same child care issues as many employees. The risk that we run, as a society, even in a hybrid-work setting, is executives don’t listen to employees looking for flexibility and a real proximity bias sets in among people who are at the office and those that aren’t.”

While JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said last year remote work “doesn’t work for spontaneous idea generation” and erodes culture, Elliott said the data shows hybrid settings allow for better work-life balance while also increasing workers’ sense of belonging among the colleagues. Modern technology connects co-workers — including those who may have worked remotely before the pandemic — that levels the playing field among employees. That sense of fairness, not based on face time or who happens to have a chance meeting in an executive-suite elevator, boosts overall work satisfaction, Elliott said.

JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon speaks at the Boston College Chief Executives Club luncheon in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., November 23, 2021.

Brian Snyder | Reuters

“The data runs counter to the idea that always being in the office is the best way to foster culture,” Elliott said. “Using digital tools is really important to building a culture for people who aren’t the average white male executive. Companies that invest in modern tools and in rethinking how they bring people together will do better than those insisting in full-time office work.”

Elliott noted that while Slack benefits from work-from-home policies, all Future Forum research was completed independent of the technology company.

Cultural mythology

It’s possible the executive-employee disconnect represents a division between what’s best for the organization and what’s best for the individual, argued Art Markman, a professor of psychology and marketing at the University of Texas at Austin. In an essay for Harvard Business Review, Markman wrote that observing work by others can lead to a phenomenon called goal contagion.

“When you observe the actions of other people, you often adopt their same goals,” Markman wrote. “Being around a group of people who are working toward a common mission reinforces that goal in everyone in the workplace.”

But several of Markman’s assertations — including “the physical workplace enables moments of serendipity that can move projects along” and “it’s harder for institutional knowledge to make its way around in a remote environment” — are more fairy tale than reality, Elliott said.

“I’ve heard so many times from executives about the importance of whiteboarding, but that sentiment is always coming from the person who is controlling the pen in that whiteboard session,” Elliott said. “The truth is whiteboarding leads to group think. If you allow people to submit ideas on their own, not in a room with others, studies show you’ll get more creativity.”

lad Lapich, with tech startup company Fast, works on his computer on the first day back in the office on March 24, 2021 in San Francisco, California.

Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

Bringing people back to the office for chance meetings in an elevator or by the water cooler is “mythology,” Elliott said. Still, it’s possible those interactions are much more valuable to an executive than to an employee — further leading to the disconnect, said Amy Zimmerman, chief people officer at Relay Payments, which has worked with founders and executives to develop and nurture culture.

Older executives rely on face-to-face communication to get a better sense for what’s going on throughout their organizations, Zimmerman said. They also may have more need for those chance conversations to keep tabs on a large number of employees, she said.

“I’ve worked with a CEO who told me he just liked the energy of the office,” said Zimmerman. “There was something about seeing the cars in the parking lot that brought him joy. The fact is, corporate America is likely changed forever. You’re making a huge mistake if you’re requiring folks back in office full time, because they see the progress most companies have made in the last two years, and they’ll ask, ‘why?’ It feels like micromanagement.”

Symbolic return

While notions that working from an office improve productivity or idea generation aren’t backed up by evidence, executive excitement about returning to work may serve a greater purpose, said Gia Ganesh, vice president of people and culture at Florence Healthcare.

The movement to bring people back to office settings may represent a fundamental human need for socialization, said Ganesh. Executive excitement about returning to offices can optimistically be seen as corporate leaders signaling to employees that it’s once again acceptable to return to pre-pandemic life. That’s an important step for human and group psychology, said Ganesh.

The fact is, corporate America is likely changed forever. You’re making a huge mistake if you require folks back in office full time because they see progress most companies have made in the last two years, and they’ll ask, ‘why?’

Amy Zimmerman

chief people officer, Relay Payments

“We work better when we’re at home, so why should we have to come into office? Why spend two hours commuting when it’s counter-productive? Because during these times of the pandemic, sense of belonging has been broken,” Ganesh said. “The workplace enables that sense of belonging.”

Like Elliott, Ganesh advocated hybrid work settings become the norm in a post-pandemic world. Just as people worry more about flying even though data shows car crashes are far more likely than plane wrecks, executives may need to retrain themselves to feel OK with this new reality, she said.

“Humans have a need for control,” said Ganesh. “As an executive, you feel you have better control and visibility if everyone is in front of you.”

While most executives would never admit it, their desire to return to the office may lead to a dip in productivity, said Zimmerman. The question is whether they’ll care.

“People can goof off in an office,” Zimmerman said. “But many executives I speak with simply miss seeing people.”

72% of Tech Workers May Quit Their Jobs. Fixing Organizational Cultures Can Help Them Stay Put

We’ve known for a while now that there’s a tech talent shortage. Over a decade ago, more than half of CEOs expressed concern over the dearth of talent for digital roles. By 2019, 79% had concerns. The pandemic has severely exacerbated the issue and, to make matters worse, current tech workers are unhappy and fleeing their jobs. Seven in 10 tech workers say they’re considering quitting their jobs within the next year. 

Employee expectations are high, and the performance gap is significant –just 1 in 4 knowledge workers strongly agree that their company exemplifies the factors they have identified as being important, such as well-being, employee experience, and values. The pandemic and the rise of remote work have changed the way we view our lives and the world. This has led to what organizational psychologist Anthony Klotz coined “The Great Resignation.” 

The Great Resignation

In the U.S., the Labor Department revealed that 4.4 million Americans left their jobs in September 2021 – the highest number on record. The phenomenon is often associated with the United States; however, rates of resignation are high globally. In the U.K., the number of open jobs surpassed 1 million for the first time ever in August. 

Generally speaking, it’s not uncommon for employees to leave their jobs in search of new opportunities. However, the technology industry is currently experiencing an acute form of disengagement. Staff turnover among U.S. tech companies ranks at 13.2%, which is the highest attrition index among all industries, with resignation rates increasing 4.5% over the previous year.

Poor Culture Leads to Unhappy Employees

For some workers, the pandemic has triggered a monumental shift in priorities. Many are now seeing the shift as encouragement to pursue a dream job or career or transition to a different style of work. However, for many workers who were already teetering on the edge pre-pandemic, poor cultures, work overload, lack of work-life balance, burnout, and lack of opportunity have pushed them to their breaking point.

Feeling undervalued

According to TalentLMS and Workable, a large number of tech employees say they feel undervalued and unappreciated when they’re at work and are looking for opportunities where they feel their work and input is respected. This issue is particularly evident in larger businesses, where there is a greater risk that employees could feel like small fish in a big pond, and where their individual efforts and achievements are more likely to go unnoticed.

Lack of career progression

About four in 10 IT, software, and tech workers have stated that limited career progression made them consider leaving their jobs. It’s easy to feel frustrated in a job if there’s little opportunity for promotion and career advancement. In order to develop and progress within their career, employees may seek out a different, more senior position at another company.

Rigid work structure

Flex-time and remote working are becoming increasingly popular ways to work. According to Gallup, 91% of workers in the U.S. working at least some of their hours remotely are hoping their ability to work at home persists after the pandemic; 54% of employees who work remotely at least some of the time say they would ideally like to split their time between working at home and in the office. People may look elsewhere for employment if their current job is not willing to be at least a little flexible on working arrangements.

Poor collaboration

Collaboration is at the heart of many critical business processes, especially as organizations grow more virtual and geographically spread out. If the experience of collaboration is challenging or counter-productive, this can affect morale and team cohesion. People often get stressed out when their tools or lack of teamwork can’t help them get their jobs done or meet their personal career goals.

Burnout

According to SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management), 48% of U.S. workers feel mentally and physically exhausted at the end of the workday, while another 41% report feeling burned out from their work. Overall mental health continues to get worse, with rates of anxiety, depression, stress, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) increasing dramatically. Citing heavier workloads, isolation, lack of work/life integration, longer working hours, and limited to no time off, tech employees are looking for new jobs and resigning from current ones in droves.

Toxic work environment

According to one study, working for a company that doesn’t value psychological well-being increases the risk of depression by 300%. Lack of recognition, favoritism, unhealthy communication, gossiping, and high turnover are a few issues that cause a toxic work culture. This can create conflict, low morale, excessive tension, negative results, illness, high turnover, and even abusive behavior amidst employees – contributing to employees quitting their jobs in search of a more positive environment. 

Become a Culture of Choice

To attract and retain top tech talent in the era of the Great Resignation organizations will need to get creative – fast. What can you do to create a company culture that’s appealing to applicants but also keeps existing employees happy and engaged? 

Here are a few key steps:

Be generous, and public, with your praise.

Oftentimes, employees only hear from leaders when something is wrong. This creates a distorted and negative perception of the value of their work and your leadership. Constructive criticism is important, but acknowledging a job well done is even more so as feeling undervalued is one of the top reasons for tech employees to quit, as noted above. 

By publicly praising your teams, you’re creating a positive perception of their value to the organization and it establishes you as an empathetic and thoughtful leader. It will also encourage others to share praise rather than withhold it, creating a positive and collaborative work environment. 

Become an ally and advocate for your team’s growth.

In a study by the University of Southern California, “Attracting and Retaining Talent: Improving the Impact of Workplace Mentorship” they identified several solutions to employee turnover, including career and professional development. With attrition rates above 13% in the tech sector, as a leader, it’s critical to develop a “mentorship” mentality, whether the objective is to develop emerging leaders, improve culture, or assist employees in meeting their career goals. 

Be the person who collaborates with your team to eliminate obstacles and open doors. When they see you care about their continued growth and opportunity—even if that means they transition to a new department or assignment—they will feel valued and more likely to stay. 

Be flexible.

1 in 3 tech workers say a lack of remote work options is a reason that would make them want to quit their job. Flexible leaders are able to change their plans to match the reality of the situation. As a result, they maintain productivity during transitions or periods of chaos. Being a flexible leader means recognizing that how and when your employees work best will vary depending on their individual circumstances. The important thing is that work gets done well – not that it gets done in a prescribed timeframe or environment. 

In addition, being a flexible leader means surrounding yourself with a diversity of thought and people, as well as being open to embracing change and new ideas or concepts. Be flexible in your own leadership style to make everyone feel comfortable and able to contribute their best to the conversation or interaction. Have an open mind and focus on your core values. This will allow you to better understand the challenges of your teams, and propose solutions to meet changing needs.   

Create space for teamwork and collaboration.

One of the biggest challenges facing the tech industry is cultivating a collaborative culture. A collaborative culture is based on openness, complete transparency, and building trust. As a leader, you must communicate your vision clearly and consistently while also making sure that your team is onboard. Share information openly, whether it’s positive or negative, and set realistic expectations so that your team members are aware of their roles in the bigger picture. Establish norms around communication, interaction, equality, problem-solving, conflict resolution, and decision making. 

Teams also need to have the right technology and tools. Without that, collaborating with colleagues on the other side of the planet would be next to impossible. The right tools enable your teams to be more effective in their daily tasks while setting up a more transparent communication channel. It also gives everyone more visibility into projects and creates opportunities for people to work on the same task. Collaboration tools can help teams manage change, communicate, and save time while remaining productive.     

Focus on employee well-being.

58% of tech workers have indicated that they’re suffering from burnout and those who suffer from burnout are twice as likely to quit their jobs than those who don’t. To help your team genuinely flourish, create conditions where two-way communication is frequent and candid. This means checking in with your team members early and often about their personal well-being, asking how they’re feeling about work and really listening to what they say. 

It’s important to not just “talk the talk.” Actively model good behavior such as taking breaks, setting guardrails around emailing after working hours, and leaving the office or being offline. Remember to think, and talk, about well-being holistically, including financial security, career satisfaction, emotional health, and workplace relationships. 

Eliminate toxicity.

39% of tech employees have cited toxic work environments as a reason for wanting to quit their jobs. Consistent bad behavior in a workplace isn’t just the result of a few “bad apples.” A toxic culture is inherently a management problem because it cannot co-exist in the presence of sound leadership. Failing to notice and act upon warning signs that something is wrong, or not fully appreciating how serious an offense may be leads to a harmful environment and high rates of attrition. 

A people manager’s job is to lead a team in a way that creates sustainable business results. Creating or allowing a toxic workplace to form will do the opposite. As a leader, it’s important to become familiar with causes of tension or dysfunction in the workplace, take employees’ concerns seriously, and understand your role in helping to mitigate toxicity when it occurs and re-establish a sense of safety. 

Leading with Empathy

The pandemic transformed the way we work and employees have more choices than ever before. Pay and benefits are no longer enough. 52% of workers say they would quit their job –and only 1 in 4 workers would accept one –if company values do not align with personal values, and that begins with culture. Although the competition is fierce for qualified tech talent, organizations must start laying the groundwork now to keep their candidate pipeline full. Leading with empathy means understanding your employees’ feelings, thoughts, and emotions.  

Being an empathetic leader allows you to connect with your team through vulnerability while assuring them that you are on top of the situation and capable of making good decisions that will benefit them and the business. Conveying a “we’re in this together” attitude, while being empathetic and vulnerable, allows your teams to model your behavior, helping to create a positive, open, and honest culture where teams feel engaged and valued.   

By building a culture built on empathy and compassion, you’re signaling that your organization understands the factors and motivations that drive an employee’s choice to stay or go.

Great Resignation? Tech Workers Try a Great Reconsideration Instead

Ernest Ogbuanya spent the pandemic working from his home in Virginia, near Amazon’s HQ2, supporting the Amazon Web Services network. The work could be stressful—thousands of businesses rely on the Amazon cloud—but Ogbuanya liked knowing the work was important, and that he could do it without leaving his house. Then Amazon announced that everyone would be returning to the office in January. That didn’t fly for Ogbuanya. So when a hiring manager reached out from an all-remote job at OutSystems, he jumped at the chance, and even took a pay cut. “Being able to work from home permanently was the selling point for me,” he says.

Ogbuanya isn’t alone in reconsidering his priorities around work. More Americans have quit their jobs in the past few months than ever before, many citing job requirements that are no longer worth the paycheck. For tech workers—who are already high paid and in demand—this has led to a reshuffling within the industry. Tech workers are moving between jobs with new demands, including the ability to work remotely, more flexibility in work hours, and more time spent on meaningful tasks.

“When I’ve talked to engineers, one of the things they’ve been prioritizing, in addition to freedom and flexibility, is really about how the work can be important,” says Kit Merker, the COO of Nobl9, a software reliability platform. “It used to be about the campus, the perks, the money. But if you’re sitting at home and you don’t have access to the micro kitchen, the barista, the massages, then what really is separating this job from another job?”

Merker runs a conference for site reliability engineers, and says many people in that line of work have been burnt out by the demands of keeping platforms up and running in the pandemic. Companies that make remote-work products (Slack, Zoom), video streaming (Netflix), or delivery (Doordash, Amazon) have all faced higher demand, along with higher expectations from customers in terms of how well their tech should work. Merker says that some engineers are questioning whether the stress is worth it. “It’s giving people existential angst,” he says. “Like, ‘I’m building software to help food get delivered. That’s cool, but man, it’s killing me.’”

“You’ve got people saying, ‘Now that I think about it, I have a bullshit job,’” says Joseph B. Fuller, who coleads the Future of Work Project at Harvard Business School. That’s one of the reasons he and other economists have seen white-collar workers, including those in tech, looking for new jobs in the last year. Fuller calls this phenomenon the Great Reconsideration: It’s not a total opting out of the workforce, but a reappraisal of what tech workers can expect to get out of their next job.

A poll from Citrix in September found that 35 percent of tech workers leaving a job cited burnout. In their new jobs, 40 percent of workers prioritized flexibility, and another 41 percent looked for benefits beyond financial security—including perks around wellbeing more broadly.

“You’ve got people saying, ‘Now that I think about it, I have a bullshit job.’” 

Joseph B. Fuller,  the Future of Work Project at Harvard Business School

For some, well-being includes less time spent on toilsome tasks and fewer nights and weekends on call. Zac Nickens, a hiring manager at OutSystems, says job candidates regularly ask about how the team’s workload is split up. One advantage, he says, is that his team is distributed across three geographies: some in North America, some in Portugal, others in India and Malaysia. Working across several time zones “prevents us from having a standard ‘I’m on call day and night’ rotation,” he says. “We share weekends across those teams as well, it’s once every 12 weeks that someone has to be on call for a weekend. That’s really attractive to engineers.”

OutSystems is also a remote-first company, which has been an advantage in recruiting engineers like Ogbuanya. While some tech companies have vowed to return to an in-office culture next year, many are finding their employees have become accustomed to working wherever they like. Deel, an international payroll and compliance startup, has seen a 20 percent increase in its clients hiring abroad. Some, like Netflix, are expanding their global operations; others, like Coinbase, have embraced a “remote-first” office culture, where employees can work anywhere in the world. But others have had to make concessions to talent that wants to leave the country. “We had some big companies come to us and say, ‘My best engineer is going back to Croatia. What am I supposed to do?’” says Alex Bouaziz, Deel’s cofounder and CEO. “They have no choice.”

What’s the net effect of all of this? For some industries, conditions in 2021 have led to a “golden age for workers.” But Fuller—who also consults with several major tech companies—says employers are at risk of making too many concessions. “One of the dumber things I’ve seen big companies do is survey their workers and say, ‘What would you like?’ What you get back is a 7-year-old’s Christmas list,” he says. (He cited an executive whose assistant has refused to return to the office because of a pandemic puppy.) Giving individual employees their own custom work arrangements can become an HR nightmare, he says, and can lead to the expectation that employers have to accommodate any request.

In tech, though, employers might not have much choice—it’s already wildly competitive to find engineering talent. “What is it actually going to take to retain talent and win competitive battles over new talent?” says Merker. Employers might not be able to compete without making concessions around where, when, and how employees work. “These things are changing the criteria, and this will have a long-term impact on the tech industry.”

Tech workers are fed up and want to quit. A few thoughtful changes could make them stay

As many as two-thirds of IT workers are open to or are already actively seeking new job opportunities, a global analysis of 18,000 employees indicates, putting CIOs in a precarious position as tech talent shortages bite.

A workforce survey conducted by analyst Gartner in Q4 2021, which included 1,755 IT employees from 40 countries, found that just 29% of IT workers have a “high intent” to stay with their current employer.

IT workers are more inclined to quit their jobs than employees in other functions, Gartner found, with a 10.2% lower intent to stay than non-IT employees – the lowest out of all corporate functions.

Less than a third of IT workers have a high intent to stay with their current employer, but the number is even lower in Australia and New Zealand (23.6%), Asia/Pacific (19.6%), and Latin America (26.9%). Even in Europe, the best-performing region, only four in 10 IT workers have a high intent to stay in their current job.

The results point to looming tech talent retention headaches for CIOs and IT managers, who are already struggling to attract key tech staff in a lean talent market while fighting numerous HR and personnel fires as overstretched teams battle burnout.

In order to retain key tech staff, CIOs might need to advocate for more flexibility in work design than the rest of the organization, said Graham Waller, analyst at Gartner.

Waller told ZDNet that the demand for tech skills, growing acceptance of remote working and a greater desire for work-life balance had shifted the power balance from employer to employee, with IT staff in particular finding themselves “in the driver’s position”.

“There’s a hiring surge happening from a lot of enterprises, which obviously creates a lot of opportunity,” said Waller.

“We looked at IT employees that changed jobs last year and 76% of them had at least two other offers. This contrasted to 43% of non-IT professionals. So there’s a huge opportunity and there’s a lot of power moving to the employee, in terms of the hot skills.”

Young IT professionals are more likely than their older colleagues to be considering a change of job, Gartner found.

The analyst’s survey indicated that IT workers aged under the age of 30 are two and a half times less likely to stay put than those over 50. Only 19.9% of IT workers aged 18 to 29 have a high likelihood to stay, compared to 48.1% of those aged 50 to 70 years.

Waller suggested that many of these younger workers were driven by a sense of purpose and the desire to work for a company that reflected their values, such as diversity, equality and inclusion. “That translates into a respect driver,” Waller added.

While staff resignations are inevitable, implementing more flexible-working policies can have a demonstrable impact on reducing rates of attrition, increasing performance and attracting new talent.

In a 2021 Gartner survey of 3,000 employees across a wide range of industries, 65% of IT employees indicated that flexible work arrangements influenced their decision to stay with their employer.

CIOs should use a data-driven approach to identify workers who are most valuable to the organization and at the highest risk of quitting, and tailor hybrid work policies to keep them engaged and performing well, the analyst said.

This includes tackling burnout, which carries the combined threat of damaging productivity and engagement amongst IT workers, increasing churn rates and leaving the organization more vulnerable to security threats.

“The traditional way that a lot of managers and organisations thought about performance was to focus on employee productivity,” said Waller.

“Interestingly, when we went fully remote for the most part, that metric actually got better. People were working longer hours, leaning in more, and so productivity has got better for a lot of people.”

However, this model is not sustainable, Gartner said; instead, employers should adopt a more “human-centric work model” that emphasises employee wellbeing and empowerment around how, when and where they work.

Some of the most progressive companies are pioneering new schedules, such as the four-day week, noted Gartner. “The human-centric model empowers and gives flexibility to leaders and teams to decide how often [to use the office] based on the underlying work, but also people’s individual circumstances,” Waller said.

Meeting culture and the concept of the office as the epicentre of work also need to be challenged in order to improve the employee experience – though Waller noted that overturning old-fashioned ideas could prove tricky, particularly amongst more traditional enterprises. “They’re concerned about, ‘if we can’t manage by visibility by walking around and seeing our people, how do we make sure they’re actually working?'” he said.

While inflexible employers face watching their employees “vote with their feet and leave”, implementing a hybrid-working policy poorly also carries risks. Hybrid done poorly tends to be a one-size-fits-all philosophy from the enterprise, said Waller, whereas organizations that “intentionally redesign work” with an emphasis on the individual employee stand to “out-hire, out-retain and out-perform” other organizations.

Management training plays a big role here. “Agile philosophy very much talks about managing by outcomes, not by micromanaging individual things. It gives a lot of empowerment to teams,” said Waller.

He said one of the most important things in this climate is to really listen and be empathetic towards your employees: “For organisations that have done that well, they’ve really changed the emphasis of the manager’s role to be much more centred on employee wellbeing and sustainable performance, and where they’ve done that, the employees are 1.7 times more likely to stay and 17% more productive.”

Majority of workers who quit a job in 2021 cite low pay, no opportunities for advancement, feeling disrespected  

The COVID-19 pandemic set off nearly unprecedented churn in the U.S. labor market. Widespread job losses in the early months of the pandemic gave way to tight labor markets in 2021, driven in part by what’s come to be known as the Great Resignation. The nation’s “quit rate” reached a 20-year high last November.

A bar chart showing the top reasons why U.S. workers left a job in 2021: Low pay, no advancement opportunities

A new Pew Research Center survey finds that low pay, a lack of opportunities for advancement and feeling disrespected at work are the top reasons why Americans quit their jobs last year. The survey also finds that those who quit and are now employed elsewhere are more likely than not to say their current job has better pay, more opportunities for advancement and more work-life balance and flexibility.

Majorities of workers who quit a job in 2021 say low pay (63%), no opportunities for advancement (63%) and feeling disrespected at work (57%) were reasons why they quit, according to the Feb. 7-13 survey. At least a third say each of these were major reasons why they left.  

Roughly half say child care issues were a reason they quit a job (48% among those with a child younger than 18 in the household). A similar share point to a lack of flexibility to choose when they put in their hours (45%) or not having good benefits such as health insurance and paid time off (43%). Roughly a quarter say each of these was a major reason.

How we did this

About four-in-ten adults who quit a job last year (39%) say a reason was that they were working too many hours, while three-in-ten cite working too few hours. About a third (35%) cite wanting to relocate to a different area, while relatively few (18%) cite their employer requiring a COVID-19 vaccine as a reason.

When asked separately whether their reasons for quitting a job were related to the coronavirus outbreak, 31% say they were. Those without a four-year college degree (34%) are more likely than those with a bachelor’s degree or more education (21%) to say the pandemic played a role in their decision.

For the most part, men and women offer similar reasons for having quit a job in the past year. But there are significant differences by educational attainment.

A chart showing that the reasons for quitting a job in 2021 vary by education

Among adults who quit a job in 2021, those without a four-year college degree are more likely than those with at least a bachelor’s degree to point to several reasons. These include not having enough flexibility to decide when they put in their hours (49% of non-college graduates vs. 34% of college graduates), having to work too few hours (35% vs. 17%) and their employer requiring a COVID-19 vaccine (21% vs. 8%).

There are also notable differences by race and ethnicity. Non-White adults who quit a job last year are more likely than their White counterparts to say the reasons include not having enough flexibility (52% vs. 38%), wanting to relocate to a different area (41% vs. 30%), working too few hours (37% vs. 24%) or their employer requiring that they have a COVID-19 vaccine (27% vs. 10%). The non-White category includes those who identify as Black, Asian, Hispanic, some other race or multiple races. These groups could not be analyzed separately due to sample size limitations.

Many of those who switched jobs see improvements

A majority of those who quit a job in 2021 and are not retired say they are now employed, either full-time (55%) or part-time (23%). Of those, 61% say it was at least somewhat easy for them to find their current job, with 33% saying it was very easy. One-in-five say it was very or somewhat difficult, and 19% say it was neither easy nor difficult.

For the most part, workers who quit a job last year and are now employed somewhere else see their current work situation as an improvement over their most recent job. At least half of these workers say that compared with their last job, they are now earning more money (56%), have more opportunities for advancement (53%), have an easier time balancing work and family responsibilities (53%) and have more flexibility to choose when they put in their work hours (50%).

Still, sizable shares say things are either worse or unchanged in these areas compared with their last job. Fewer than half of workers who quit a job last year (42%) say they now have better benefits, such as health insurance and paid time off, while a similar share (36%) says it’s about the same. About one-in-five (22%) now say their current benefits are worse than at their last job.

A bar chart showing that college graduates who quit a job are more likely than those with less education to say they’re now earning more, have more opportunities for advancement

College graduates are more likely than those with less education to say that compared with their last job, they are now earning more (66% vs. 51%) and have more opportunities for advancement (63% vs. 49%). In turn, those with less education are more likely than college graduates to say they are earning less in their current job (27% vs. 16%) and that they have fewer opportunities for advancement (18% vs. 9%).

Employed men and women who quit a job in 2021 offer similar assessments of how their current job compares with their last one. One notable exception is when it comes to balancing work and family responsibilities: Six-in-ten men say their current job makes it easier for them to balance work and family – higher than the share of women who say the same (48%).

Some 53% of employed adults who quit a job in 2021 say they have changed their field of work or occupation at some point in the past year. Workers younger than age 30 and those without a postgraduate degree are especially likely to say they have made this type of change.

Younger adults and those with lower incomes were more likely to quit a job in 2021

A bar chart showing that about a quarter of adults with lower incomes say they quit a job in 2021

Overall, about one-in-five non-retired U.S. adults (19%) – including similar shares of men (18%) and women (20%) – say they quit a job at some point in 2021, meaning they left by choice and not because they were fired, laid off or because a temporary job had ended.

Adults younger than 30 are far more likely than older adults to have voluntarily left their job last year: 37% of young adults say they did this, compared with 17% of those ages 30 to 49, 9% of those ages 50 to 64 and 5% of those ages 65 and older.

Experiences also vary by income, education, race and ethnicity. About a quarter of adults with lower incomes (24%) say they quit a job in 2021, compared with 18% of middle-income adults and 11% of those with upper incomes.

Across educational attainment, those with a postgraduate degree are the least likely to say they quit a job at some point in 2021: 13% say this, compared with 17% of those with a bachelor’s degree, 20% of those with some college and 22% of those with a high school diploma or less education.  

About a quarter of non-retired Hispanic and Asian adults (24% each) report quitting a job last year; 18% of Black adults and 17% of White adults say the same.

Former Secret Service Agent Dan Bongino Bulldozes J6 Tale From Star Witness

Former Secret Service agent Dan Bongino is debunking claims made by former White House staffer Cassidy Hutchinson during testimony in front of the partisan January 6 Committee Tuesday afternoon. 

Under oath, Hutchinson told a story about President Donald Trump allegedly lunging toward the steering wheel of The Beast (the presidential limousine) after Secret Service agents told him he could not travel to the U.S. Capitol. She said the incident occurred after a speech to supporters at the Ellipse on January 6, 2022. 

Cassidy Hutchinson testifies that she was told that as then-President Donald Trump was being driven back to the White House after the Jan. 6 rally that he demanded to be taken to the Capitol and tried to grab the steering wheel from a Secret Service agent. https://t.co/JefVhEsY0b pic.twitter.com/uUyQcnSlLG— The Associated Press (@AP) June 28, 2022

But according to Bongino, her description is impossible because President Trump wasn’t traveling in The Beast that day. Instead, he left in an SUV. 

Dan Bongino really seals the deal on why Cassidy Hutchinson’s story ‘can’t possibly be true.’ And he uses video. pic.twitter.com/zNmc9tJmW5— Kyle Becker (@kylenabecker) June 29, 2022

When the story was told in real time Tuesday, Bongino immediately questioned its validity. 

FYI, I spent over two years in the USSS transportation section and
I’m pretty darn confident that the “POTUS grabbed the steering wheel of the limo” story is either false, or exaggerated to an absurd degree. I’ll explain in detail on my podcast tomorrow, but this sounds like BS.— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) June 28, 2022

As I said, this story is bullshit. I’m sure of it. https://t.co/NEa40kMIoY— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) June 28, 2022