Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

Out in less than 3 years: Check out why workers are quick to switch jobs in today’s labor environment! [Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing] 

January 5, 2023

Miles Everson’s Business Builder Daily speaks to the heart of what great marketers, business leaders, and other professionals need to succeed in advertising, communications, managing their investments, career strategy, and more.

A Note from Miles Everson:

Hello, everyone!

We hope the new year is treating you well so far.

We’re continuing our 3-part series for The Business Builder Daily. In these articles, we talk about the past, present, and future of the independent workforce in reference to Charles Dickens’ story, “A Christmas Carol.”

For today’s article, we’ll focus on the current situation of independent work.

Continue reading to know some of the ongoing trends in today’s workforce and what you can do to properly adapt to these changes.

Miles Everson
CEO, MBO Partners
Chairman of the Advisory Board, The I Institute

Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing

In a previous article, we talked about the workforce of the past.

There, we highlighted how even before the pandemic, there were certain developments that led to the rise of the independent workforce.

Today, we’ll continue on with a related topic. After talking about the past, we’ll shift our focus to the workforce of the present.

Photo courtesy of World Economic Forum

The Erosion of Corporate Loyalty and the Prevalence of Job Hopping

Several decades ago, many employees stayed with a single company for most of their career. In return for their years of service, employers would then hand out generous pensions and retirement benefits.

Unfortunately, those days have come to an end. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), only 15% of private-sector workers have access to employer-sponsored retirement plans nowadays.

The reason for this?

Funding retirement plans of long-time workers significantly drain a company’s profits. A drag on earnings hampers a firm’s ability to compete and operate.

That’s not all. Other loyalty-building structures have also degraded over time, making it more and more difficult for employees to remain loyal to their employers.

Additionally, today’s generation of younger employees are more likely to seek new work for a variety of reasons.

Remote Work and the Independent Workforce

According to CareerBuilder’s research, Generation Z (those born from 1997 onwards) workers stay in their jobs for an average of 2 years and 3 months. Meanwhile, millennials (those born between 1980-1996) stay for an average of 2 years and 9 months.

What could be causing both Gen Z and millennial workers to move from one job to the next?

Based on Gallup’s research, millennials and Gen Z workers are more likely to change jobs if doing so will allow them to get better pay, work life and personal life balance, well-being, flexibility, and career growth opportunities.

Aside from the reasons stated above, there’s a couple of workforce trends shaping today’s labor landscape:

Due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, working from home has become normal practice. During the peak of the health crisis, workers across the globe were asked to work from the confines of their homes to comply with their respective nation’s health and safety protocols.

One of the consequences of remote work was the realization that employees don’t have to report on-site to accomplish their tasks. Because of this, working from home has become a fixture in today’s job landscape.

In the U.S., economists argue that the remote work trend will likely endure in the job market moving forward. Though some executives are pushing for the return of on-site work.

Alongside the prevalence of remote work, independent work has soared in popularity in the past few years. According to MBO’s 2022 State of Independence in America report, the number of independent workers rose from 51.1 million in 2021 to 64.4 million in 2022, with 21.6 million pursuing full-time independent work.

Additionally, millennials and Gen Z make up almost half (49%) of the independent workforce.

So, what makes independent work appealing?

First, independent workers have full control of their time. It’s up to them how and when they accomplish their work, so long as they deliver what the client asks of them. Second, they’re able to earn more than their traditionally-employed counterparts because they don’t have to rely on just one income stream.

However, as with any occupation, working independently comes with its own set of struggles. These include:

  1. Overwork – Because of stiff competition and the rising costs of living, there’s a tendency for independents to take more jobs than they can manage to make ends meet.
  2. Interruptions and distractions – Due to working remotely, professionals are more likely to get sidetracked because of their environment.
  3. Isolation – Since independents are working remotely, they’re likely to become disconnected with the people they work with due to lack of face-to-face interactions.
  4. Communication problems – Because an independent works with individuals coming from different backgrounds, nationalities, and timezones, the occurrences of miscommunication are significantly higher.
  5. Technological difficulties – Remote work possesses a variety of technological problems. For starters, lack of access to proper collaboration software can prevent them from working on projects effectively. Additionally, poor network connectivity is a problem, since most software needs a stable Internet connection to work.

The Challenges Faced by Today’s Workforce

The COVID-19 pandemic drastically changed everyone’s lives across the globe.

Even though economies have gradually opened in the past 2 years, both traditional employees and independent workers continue to face challenges.

For starters, job turnover remains high among workers because of insufficient growth opportunities, toxic workplace culture, and inadequate wages.

The second problem is the rising cost of living. Across the U.S., consumers continue to experience an uptick in the prices of rent, food, housing, and healthcare. Higher prices across the board means workers will have a harder time making ends meet.

Lastly, there is fear of a looming recession in the U.S.

Even though economists have no idea as to when the next recession will occur, workers are anxious about a potential economic downturn.

In a Fast Company poll of more than 1,000 adults, 75% are worried about the state of the economy and over half of them feel anxious about their personal finances heading into next year.

Despite the challenges cited above, the U.S. job market hasn’t shown signs of cooling down. In fact, a total of 263,000 jobs were added in November 2022, and the unemployment rate remains low at 3.7%.

That’s why even though there’s a looming threat of recession, companies continue to look for new employees—both full-time and independents—to fill gaps in their organizations.

Our discussion about today’s workforce reminds us of the “Ghost of Christmas Present,” a character in Charles Dickens’ novella, “A Christmas Carol.”

In one his conversations with Scrooge, the protagonist of the story, the “Ghost of Christmas Present” said:

“If these shadows remain unaltered by the Future, the child will die.”

Will the trends we’re seeing today continue into the future or will something change?

If you want to find out, stay tuned for the next issue because we’ll talk about the future of the workforce!

(This article is from The Business Builder Daily, a newsletter by The I Institute in collaboration with MBO Partners.)

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Thursdays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.

Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers, and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.

Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.

This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.

It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing can be inexpensive.

The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.

Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.

This is every business’ or brand’s dream!

Every Thursday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.

Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.

Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Thursday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing!


Kyle Yu
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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