Employees Are Ghosting At Work: How Should Companies Handle No-Shows?

Today’s world is more connected than ever before. Never has it been so easy to get a hold of someone on a moment’s notice, anywhere around the world. Still, employers are finding that this generation can be hard to get in front of, due to ghosting.

Ghosting refers to practices of disappearing, and this magic trick is not so magical when it happens to employers. Increasingly, job candidates either do not show up for interviews or do not show up for their first day after being hired, sometimes after jumping through multiple hoops to secure an offer. Not only do these employees not show up: they do not call, text, Facebook, or SnapChat—they, in essence, disappear.

According to Amanda Bradford, CEO and founder of The League, a dating app, the habit well-established in the dating world is now happening in the job market. She said that it has, “almost become a new vocabulary” in which “no response is a response,” especially among younger employees. It is not just happening pre-employment, either. Oftentimes, young employees are leaving work one day and never returning, never to be heard from again.

Tom Cao, successful florist and owner of Flowerama of Plano, offered some insight into this growing problem. Cao employs a high percentage of Millennials, and in his experience, this occurs when the employees, “are not working out, and they know it, and I know it, and then they just do not show up.”

He sees a real difference in this generation and finds that, even though he has an excellent staff overall, motivation can be a problem at times with younger workers.

When ghosting occurs, according to Cao, he “has spoken to them consistently [about their low performance], and they think they are doing well, and when shown the reality, they do not know how to manage it, so they shut down instead.”

The challenges created by a sudden hole in his schedule are never devastating to his business, because everyone pulls together and makes it work. However, it is still a frustrating and disheartening struggle for him and other small business owners, and one that seems avoidable.

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