Every four years it happens in the U.S. – a presidential election. Too often, it’s also an excuse companies use to withhold spending based on an uncertain outcome: “We’re afraid to invest in new initiatives until we know what’s going to happen in Washington, DC.”
This wait-and-see attitude carries over into cutbacks on hiring, training & development and, ultimately, engagement. The result is a double whammy for employees — besides feeling anxious over the new year’s uncertainty, they also become frustrated with limited-to-nonexistent options for their development as the organization goes into a holding pattern. Who wants to work for a company that isn’t moving forward?
“Progress always involves risks. You can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first base.” – Frederick B. Wilcox
Uncertainty is a fact of life, regardless of what’s scheduled to occur in any given year. Holding the line by not investing in employee recruitment and ongoing development may seem like a safe strategy, but it’s also a risky one that can negatively impact employee engagement and the internal brand. Think of the opportunities such a strategy opens up for competitors who aren’t afraid to devote resources to support their employees.
No one can predict the future, other than knowing it will change. Like an ostrich with its head in the sand, hiding isn’t a viable option for business and brand success.
“He that will not sail till all dangers are over must never put to sea.” – Thomas Fuller