What started as a blog and a creative outlet turned into a full-time consulting business Camber Parkerfounder of YoPro Knows.

YoPro Know is a consulting firm that teaches businesses how to attract and retain young professional talent. Parker has spent the past four years interviewing more than 550 young professionals about what makes them stay or leave a job, and businesses hire her to share that knowledge with them. They want to be first, not second.

By 2030, Millennials and Gen Z will make up two-thirds of the workforce – UPCEA Center for Research and Strategy

“All the data I collected, I found five key factors why young people stay or leave. I interview new professionals and seasoned professionals in the office and look for key areas where they might need help,” Parker said. “One of the top five factors I mentioned is expectation. That’s a big thing that I I see a direct correlation with people leaving.The job is not what they expected or were promised [during the interview], so what do young people do? They go to LinkedIn and find the next job in 10 minutes.”

Parker focuses on workers aged 21 to 39, which is an important range to keep happy; The UPCEA Research and Strategy Center determined in 2019 that by 2030, Millennials and Gen Z will make up two-thirds of the workforce.

Through her consulting process, Parker finds gaps her client needs to fill in order to retain their young professional employees, and then spends several months working with them to fix those gaps. She’s not trying to replace any company’s HR department — YoPro Know, she said, is meant as a complement to HR. She’ll be the first to tell you she’s an expert on young professionals, not all generations.

Along with expectation, other key factors that drive young professionals to stay or leave are communication, education, professional development and culture. When we look at communication, how do staff communicate between generations? Do older employees respect younger employees? What about direct reports; how is the communication there? In terms of education, does the company give employees the training they need to excel? If not, Parker noted, young professional employees may feel unsupported in their jobs, which would make them more likely to leave.

“It’s this cycle,” she said. “Companies don’t want to spend so much on training because people are leaving. This is the Great Resignation, so companies say, ‘Why are we going to spend all this time?’ But people don’t feel educated about what they’re doing… That’s what I think my mission is, to fix that. I believe it is possible, but we have to get over the idea that young people are just looking for work. A lot of what I do is just bridging the gap. Yes, I’m the new pro and yes, I’m a new pro, but I’m trying to help seasoned professionals plan and prepare. We are trying to create the next group of leaders.”

Harvard Business Review reports that turnover can cost a company 200% of an employee’s annual salary. Parker said the annual price tag for young professional turnover is $30.5 billion.

“The amount of money companies can save by working with a retention consultant,” Parker said. “If a company can fix this problem now, they will be well placed. There are companies I’ve talked to that say, ‘We don’t have a problem,’ but 90% of the companies I’ve talked to do. But you can’t convince them of that.”

Annual turnover cost of young professionals for companies: 30.5 billion dollars

200% of an employee’s annual salary: the cost of employee turnover

– Harvard Business Review

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