The Playbook: Employers' costly mistake and the battle to end hybrid work

Employers are making a costly mistake by not top-down communication, a last resort for Covid-19 relief loans, and more.

The Playbook: Employers' costly mistake and the battle to end hybrid work

Editor's note: The Playbook Edition is a weekly look at trends, stories and changes that may affect your career and business. Want to receive more stories similar to this one in your email? Subscribe to The Playbook Newsletter.

This week, we begin The Playbook by asking a complex question: why are companies losing their momentum in DEI?

Conversations and perceived progress about bringing diversity, equity and inclusivity to workplaces in the United States peaked around the time of the pandemic.

As many of us return to a semblance normality, the progress made in 2020 has largely faded.

It is not surprising that momentum has slowed down. Many experts predicted this would happen. The numbers are shocking, and many experts believe it was a costly error.

In the latest Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Report by leadership consulting firm DDI, leaders have endorsed a decrease of 18% in their endorsements for DEI efforts at their companies in the past two years. This includes a decline in optimism regarding recruitment, advancement, and diversity of leaders.

DEI is a topic that affects not only a company’s culture, but its bottom line as well as its recruitment efforts.

Stephanie Neal is the director of DDI’s Center for Analytics and Behavioral Research. She said that economic uncertainty and labor issues have caused many businesses to shift their focus away from DEI.

Neal stated that if companies do not act now to rekindle their DEI program and reinvest, they will lose talent which could have a profound effect on future business success.

According to DDI, the stakes are higher for mid-level managers and executives.

Sixty-four percent of the 2,155 women and minorities who were mid- to senior-level leaders who didn't trust their leaders felt that they needed to leave their current position to advance in their career, compared to only 27 percent of those who believed their leaders.

This is a high cost, especially in a talent-scarce market.

SBA announces last resort to Covid EIDL loan

Small Business Administration confirmed it would accept the "offer in Compromise" as a last resort for small businesses who defaulted on their Covid EIDL loan.

Basics: The agency was previously silent about whether it would accept an offer in compromise. This is when a borrower gives up a portion of the payment for a defaulted debt to settle that debt permanently, and avoid litigation or further collection efforts.

What it means: When billions of dollars in EIDL loans started coming due, Covid EIDL loan borrowers who could not pay back the loans had few options other than filing for bankruptcy. This confirmation opens up a new option for these businesses, allowing them to avoid the debt-trap that plagued past disaster loan borrowers.

Should you snoop, or should you not snoop at all? The stakes are very high.

Andy Medici, Senior Reporter at The Playbook, notes that business owners face a difficult task in navigating social media in 2023. It can be even more complex when it involves their employees' accounts.

What can - and more importantly, what should - companies do to monitor an employee's use of social media?

Experts suggest that companies should be clear about their violations and to look for bad media in order to determine if they are associated with them.

Experts provided insight on how to handle social media with prospective employees in order to ensure that things are a fit from a culture standpoint.

The fight over remote work continues

Quote of the week: "We are seeing the tension between remote work versus working in the office play out on job listings. Remote work will continue to exist. Some companies, however, want their employees to return to the office and will pay relocation costs to do so. Layla O'Kane is a senior economist at Lightcast. She explains how the battle to end hybrid work can be seen in job listings.

How to attract workers back

Here are the top benefits that employees would use to lure them back into the office.