NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – In November, 4.5 million Americans voluntarily left their jobs in the U.S., according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

In Tennessee, an estimated 377,000 people left their jobs between July and October, with numbers from November and December still pending.  

Lori Bumgarner, owner of paNASH, has been a career coach for more than 20 years. She said she doesn’t see the great resignation slowing down for Nashville over the next year. 

“For Nashville, I think it’s going to be the same as the trend has been for the nation. I think it’s going to continue. I think, especially for Nashville, because Nashville has so many opportunities,” Bumgarner said. “Employees, job candidates, they have their pick right now. And I see that continuing well into 2022, possibly by the end of 2022 and Nashville might actually be the last to come out of the great resignation.”  

 She said the number one reason she’s seeing clients leave their jobs is so they can continue working from home and not feel micromanaged. She said the pandemic also drove people to find more meaningful work.

“Finding work that employees can find purpose in. I mean, that’s huge. And I think COVID has really opened people’s hearts to not just make a paycheck, but to make a difference in the world,” Bumgarner said.  

So what can employers do to keep workers? Bumgarner recommended employers continue to allow people to work from home.  

“I think doing so will not only help companies retain their current workforce, but will also broaden their talent pool when they have to fill positions,” she said.  

Other things they can do is keep up with growing wages and perhaps, most importantly, make sure workers feel purpose.  

“Show them how their individual roles have a direct impact on the people that their companies serve and how it helps the company carry out its mission,” Bumgarner said.  

She said if the great resignation doesn’t turn around, companies could struggle to stay afloat. Bumgarner said small businesses, especially, could be forced to shut down if they aren’t able to find enough help.  

Her recommendation to job seekers is to make sure to always show courtesy to employers and recruiters reaching out. Some of her clients report getting inundated with emails and LinkedIn messages. She warned that ignoring or ghosting employers could hurt candidates in the future.