Why the Great Resignation Is Actually the Great Reshuffle
It’s true that workers are resigning at historic rates. But calling this phenomenon the Great Resignation isn’t quite right.
What’s happening is a “Great Reshuffle.”
Yes, people are resigning, but most of them aren’t leaving the workforce. Instead, they are finding new jobs where they have more freedom, or make more money, or enjoy the work more; or, in some cases, all three.
But whether we call this movement the Great Reshuffle or the Great Resignation, it’s an understatement to say it’s making selling challenging. There’s no avoiding the Great Reshuffle. LinkedIn insights reveal it’s global, it’s across all industries, and across small, mid-sized, and large organizations.
Turnover among the mass of B2B buyers — that is, corporate director-level-and-above — is up 28% globally over the last three months, according to the LinkedIn Economic Graph. Given the massive shifts of the Great Reshuffle, it’s not surprising that a recent survey found 85% of salespeople have delayed or lost a deal because of a job change within an account.
Turnover is also high among sales teams. Globally, job transitions among sales professionals are up 26% over the last three months. The impact can result in longer sales cycles, higher churn, and lower win rates.
The bottom line? In the Great Reshuffle sellers must keep tabs on prospects and customers coming and going at unprecedented rates. At the same time, sales managers often must work to limit the impacts of attrition on their own organizations.
1. Focus on data accuracy
Even before this Great Reshuffle, 41% of sales pros said inaccurate CRM data was one of their top challenges. Now, with this increasing rate of change, CRMs can potentially become a mess. Quickly.
Other elements of the sales tech stack — from sales intelligence to sales engagement to marketing automation tools — also relies on accurate data. Out-of-date buyer data can affect the whole sales workflow. Get ahead of it by making data accuracy a focus and by investing in tools that keep your systems updated in real-time.
2. Multithreading is more important than ever
Multithreading or forming relationships with multiple people on an account’s buying committee is always a best practice. LinkedIn Sales Navigator data indicates that sellers who are connected on LinkedIn to at least four people at an account are 16% more likely to close a deal with that company, compared to sellers who have less than four connections.
This is particularly true during this time of change – if you have just one contact, and they leave, you are starting from scratch. To avoid that fate, make an account map and identify the buying committee, and do your best to form multiple relationships within it.
3. The silver lining — a job switch can open new accounts
Change can be positive. For example, if your champion at one company goes to another, you often have a shorter pathway to a deal at the new company.
A related point — when a new leader takes over a team, they often look to change things up. That can include investing in new tools and services.
If you’ve had trouble getting into an organization, but you see a new leader come in, reach out to that person. Congratulate them on their new job. Ask about their challenges and determine how you might add value.
4. Sales leaders: invest in your people
It’s nearly impossible to win as a team if you are constantly changing players, something far more likely in the days of the Great Reshuffle. Every salesperson you lose means months of lost productivity, not to mention the resources it takes to train a new person.
To counteract the threat of attrition, reinforce your organization’s mission whenever you can. Invest in your team’s development. Stay abreast of how they are feeling in these challenging times. Celebrate your people’s wins. Make diversity, inclusion, and belonging a priority.
Also, consider empowering your sales team to work in a hybrid model or go completely remote. Enabling these options may increase your odds of retaining your staff.
28% yoy increase in B2B buyer job transitions in the last three months
(October to December 2021)
17 avg. jobs viewed by B2B buyers on LinkedIn in September 2021, a 7% increase from April 2020
58% increase in buyers posting a job change in January 2021, compared to the 11 months preceding
26% yoy increase in seller job transitions in the last three months
(October to December 2021)
24 avg. jobs viewed by B2B buyers on LinkedIn in September 2021, a 22% increase from April 2020
8x increase in total remote job posts on LinkedIn viewed by sales professionals in Sept. 2021, versus April 2020
The most beneficial thing you can do right now is to learn how to master multithreading. Gathering champions, influencers, and talking directly to the decision-makers is the key to success when it comes to closing deals faster in a difficult environment.
The Sales Think Tank:
Selling Through the Great Reshuffle
This webinar explores how sales organizations can turn the Great Reshuffle into the Great Opportunity. Join LinkedIn’s Mattali Pattnaik, The Sales Evangelist Donald C. Kelly, and Jake Dunlop, CEO of Skaled Consulting, as they explore the power of multithreading and how to future-proof your sales organization amid the Great Reshuffle.
This short video explains the very real impact the Great Reshuffle has had on both sides of the selling equation, as more buyers leave for new roles and attrition challenges sales organizations.
We’re in the early innings of the Great Reshuffle, but it's crystal clear that there will be winners and losers. The organizations that embrace empowering employees by providing flexibility, trust, and upskilling will thrive. In a Darwinian fashion, those who refuse to adapt will fall behind. Their best and brightest talent will quit and move to the companies that offer employees choices, options, respect, and dignity.
How LinkedIn can help in the Great Reshuffle
LinkedIn’s 800 million members power the world’s most trusted and up-to-date employee data, due to its self-reported nature. As buyers and sellers take part in the Great Reshuffle, you’ll see the job changes unfold immediately on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator builds on this data and makes it easy for sellers to identify and build relationships. With Sales Navigator, sellers can see when buyers change jobs, keep their CRM up to data, and create new opportunities.