This year caused a mass exodus from corporate America. Deemed ‘The Great Resignation,’ the move saw more than 4 million Americans left their jobs since December 2020 and the numbers are steadily increasing. No longer married to the idea of working for 50 years and then retiring, millennials are leading the charge on cancelling corporate jobs in search of the redefined American Dream.
Stephanie Weatherspoon decided the pandemic was the silver lining she needed for a career change. With a background working with nonprofits, the wife and mother of three shifted gears, giving birth to a new venture.
“I ran a non-profit through the schools that provided before- and after-school care in the buildings but also care on no school days, half days, snow days at the community center. When schools closed, I was home and decided to focus on what I wanted to do. I already knew that when schools reopened I wasn’t going back,” said Weatherspoon. “I decided to get my certification to be a childbirth educator through Lamaze and a Dona certified postpartum doula.”
The higher probability of fatalities for women of color and their child during birth are staggering. Mistrust of the medical system and racial factors contribute to the growing statistics, but COVID-19 helped to accelerate matters. Though the virus knows no race, its effect on minority mothers tells a different story. Hispanic mothers account for 43.5 percent and Black mothers, 20 percent of those who gave birth and had COVID. Birthing experiences for Black and Brown mothers have become an issue of life and death and Weatherspoon hopes to shift that narrative.
“After my own birth experiences, I became obsessed with evidence-based birth and knew that I wanted a different experience for my third but I also wanted others to be aware of their options so they can make informed decisions,” said Weatherspoon. “Black and Brown babies and moms are more likely to die than white babies and moms and I felt like the best way to address that in my own community is to provide them with education giving them a say in their own birth experience.”
The end of the summer 2021 signified a gaping hole in employment with a record 11 million job openings across the country. With a large amount of job openings in tech and healthcare fields, industries are seeing dips in much-needed talent, but employees are trading in the traditional 9 to 5’s for more freedom. Workers primed for retirement are seeing an out during the Great Resignation. However, the pandemic and financial planning had put a wrinkle in their plans.
“While many companies are focused on attracting and retaining talent during the Great Resignation, there is another group of their employee base that needs attention in order to transition out of the workforce,” said Amelia Dunlap, vice president of Nationwide Retirement Solutions marketing. “It’s clear delayed retirements can foster negative emotions, which can be detrimental to a company’s culture and bottom line. Employers should look to invest in the short-term and long-term financial planning solutions that help employees reach their financial goals and prepare for the retirement they want, when they want it. Doing so may not only help those who are ready to retire, but potentially serve as a reason for younger talent to stay with the company.”
Financial planning is a major component of workers choosing to remain at their place of employment. Despite the large droves of employees heading for the exits, financial stability is an opportunity rarely afforded. However, families are making sacrifices to forge ahead.
“I’m grateful that I got the opportunity to do something I’m passionate about and continue to grow my business. My husband has been so supportive and it’s been a blessing in this pandemic. Thankfully we were able to survive without my income and it’s amazing how much of my income went to daycare,” says Weatherspoon. “When that expense was gone, we were in good shape for me to not work, study and focus on getting my certifications.”