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In the US there is a wave of resignations, but Mexicans are 'holding on' to their jobs

In Mexico, workers stay at their job, even if they are not satisfied with it.

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.
You're reading Entrepreneur United States, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media. This story originally appeared on Alto Nivel

While the United States saw a wave of massive voluntary resignations, given that in April was when approximately four million people left their jobs, in Mexico people are holding on to their jobs.

According to the National Survey of Occupation and Employment (ENOE) of the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), in the first quarter of 2020 there were about 835 thousand 086 resignations, in the first quarter of this year there were only about 566 thousand 153, Therefore, there was an approximate 35% reduction in the number of job desertions.

Taking into account that in the first quarter of 2019, in pre-pandemic times, without the atypical situation that occurred since 2020 due to Covid-19, there were 783,962 total resignations. These are the reasons why Mexicans voluntarily leave their jobs, according to Inegi:

  • Labor disputes or with your superiors;
  • He couldn't respond to the demands of the job;
  • Working conditions deteriorated or involved personal and / or health risks;
  • Discrimination or harassment;
  • Pension, retirement or retirement;
  • They wanted to earn more and / or improve at work;
  • They wanted to become independent;
  • They wanted to continue studying or resume their studies;
  • Marriage, pregnancy and / or family responsibilities;
  • A relative prevented him from continuing to work;
  • Others and unspecified.

It should be noted that the first four reasons have to do with inconvenience, pressure or uncertainty in the workplace and are the main reasons that make workers say “I am quitting”.

How did the employment situation change?

According to Ernesto Barroso Boelsterly, director of the Bachelor of Talent Management at the Faculty of Business at the Universidad Panamericana, Mexico campus, the first quarter of 2019, before the health crisis, the historical maximum of resignations was reached in Mexico, since There were 222,879 resignations due to discomfort at work; This only encompasses causes such as the deterioration of working conditions; conflicts at work or with superiors; discrimination or harassment; or that they could not respond to the demands. In the first quarter of 2021, resignations for these reasons fell by 20%

However, in the heading of "working conditions deteriorated or involved personal and / or health risks", it was significantly reduced from the first quarter of 2020 to the first quarter of 2021, going from 161 thousand 840 to 73 thousand 299 resignations.

Given this, Adrián Estrada Argott, an independent human resources consultant, considered that the effect of the pandemic was directly reflected in these numbers, because employees, when carrying out their work activities through the home office, considerably reduced the risk of contagion.

In relation to this category, Barroso Boelsterly believes that when employees see both their physical and mental health compromised in the activities they carry out, that is when many decide to quit their jobs. An example could be a mechanical job, where the person is physically very active and in danger. In other cases, there may not be so many physical risks, but there may be prolonged stress or there are many pressures, so they see their mental health in danger and decide to drop out.

In Mexico, workers stay at work, even if they are not satisfied in the job.

Since the pandemic began, the United States government has injected a series of resources to give money directly to families and increased unemployment benefits. This relieves pressure on people in the neighboring country to the north to keep or look for another job while receiving financial aid during the crisis.

In Mexico, the story is very different because there is no unemployment subsidy program and government aid in monetary terms was scarce. This puts more pressure on workers to keep their current job.

Estrada Argott pointed out that this is mainly due to the current economic, social and labor conditions, given that a part of the collaborators in Mexico want a job stability that guarantees income that allows them to cover their needs -especially in the short term- and, therefore, Therefore, when looking for other options, the collaborator would change jobs if they consider them safe and favorable; If not, you will stay at your job, even if you are not entirely satisfied.

According to the Seventh Study on Internet Job Search, published by the Internet MX Association, 45% of those surveyed have a job, but are still looking for a new one on the net.

For his part, Barroso Boelsterly said that you have to be realistic in this context and understand the situation of people who are losing their jobs. For example, in the United States, despite the pandemic, it is an economy that is recovering at a fairly interesting rate, while Mexico is positioned on a different terrain.

“Of the 4 million resignations in the United States, many people quit - without having a job, project or anything - just because they thought they needed more time with themselves or with their family. Depending, if they were single people, time for themselves, if they have a family for their relatives "

exemplified the expert in Human Resources.

Having said the above, the specialist recalled that other reasons why the employee leaves his job is because he does not agree with the purpose of the company. In addition, because they find better job offers or job options, although the latter occurs more in the United States than in Mexico .

How to avoid a wave of abandonment at work?

What will happen when the economic and labor situation in Mexico improves? Will more employees quit their jobs with a new one under their arm, or will they look for a better one?

Estrada Argott assures that at the present time, with the world dealing with a pandemic, organizations must implement a series of actions to reduce job abandonment. For example, the development of strategies that promote health and reduce risks through home office, hybrid schedules, among others.

Likewise, the independent HR Consultant considers relevant the implementation of the emotional salary, which provides employees with non-financial benefits that make them feel good and comfortable within the organization. It could be children's stays, flexibility in schedules –as long as the work processes allow it–, as well as plans and support schemes for personal improvement, even a self-learning system. This increases the loyalty that the worker will have with the organization.

According to Estrada Argott, a more effective link should be fostered between the employee, superiors and the organization that encourages agile and productive communication. In addition, develop not only creative and effective leaders, but also emotional leaders who care that others feel good (empathic) and are curious about their environment, about social reality (social conscience).

In addition, the Human Resources area becomes more important in the current conditions of companies and they must assume a leadership perspective in organizations to understand the needs and attend to the well-being of employees, without losing sight of the mission and objectives of the organizations. .

Estrada Argott quotes the phrase “either you acclimatise or acclimatise” , that is, or take action on what organizations require and leave behind various practices that no longer correspond to the current era.

Goodbye to 'emergency mode'

The expert says that initially, when the pandemic began, it was good to use an alert attitude to any situation. However, it should not be exaggerated when resorting with this, as that could lead to the opposite effect, such as job burnout.

"It is time to begin to prioritize and understand that, although we are still in a pandemic, we must see it as the way to operate in a new normal that we are living today and make it part of our day to day"

Barroso Boelsterly said.

He also commented that well-being is a strategic pillar that must be maintained in the long term in senior management. Before, large companies to work for were measured in the well-being of employees, but today there are two issues explained by Barroso Boelsterly, the first is that the legislation, NOM 035, requires companies to take care of the mental health of their employees Therefore, they are already required by law. Second, the best companies to work for are drawing the best talent.

“As a company, if you don't become competitive on the wellness issue that you can contribute, you will be left one step behind and the talent will prefer other companies. Although it is not a retention in itself, but with a strategic sense, that whoever stays is the naturally good time for the person and the company. The worker must be in an ecosystem that helps him to develop, grow and be well with himself to get his maximum potential "

indicated the expert.

Among the activities that generate a healthy and well-being environment are recreational spaces, where the worker feels comfortable, flexible hours, being inclusive of the time needs of each person, as long as they have the responsibility of meeting their objectives. and responsibilities. Also, benefits are important, where social security is provided.

“There are companies that have a personalized compensation scheme, this means that each person decides what they want and what they don't. As a collaborator, you can only decide to keep social security, but to be paid more. They adjust the salary if you want the insurance of major medical expenses to be taken away. Others can choose if they want more vacation days. Then these calculations are made adapting the needs of each person "

the specialist explained.

It is good to understand both perspectives, both what is good for the employee and what is good for the company, as this creates a win-win relationship between the two.

The new work schemes

The expert explained that remote work and home office are not the same, since the first refers to working from your office and the second is working from home. In addition, although there are different opinions on the subject, he commented that productivity was not significantly impacted towards the negative, contrary to what many thought.

“From the perspective of the worker, the home office and remote work, it gave him the flexibility to be able to connect to a meeting from, for example, an Uber or about to take a flight, as well as attend to my work while I was traveling with my family. A topic that was possibly done before, but it was strange. Today we can do it and it is normal "


Although not everything is positive in this work scheme, changing it to a face-to-face model implies a very big challenge for companies. Although it is known that it is not the same interaction and interpersonal relationships when attending offices, since being face to face helps to better connect between people, but the model of working from home has given workers flexibility and they may spend more time living with their families, possibly it is something that they would not change.

“The social part of the human, through a screen is not that easy compared to seeing each other in the office and interacting. Not how to connect and disconnect from boards. It is that time of socialization that helps a lot in the company "

the specialist explained.