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Are Employees Less Engaged?

New research from Mercer shows that employee engagement among US workers is lower than five years ago and says that one in three workers are seriously considering leaving his or her organization.  Another 20 percent of survey respondents were described as “apathetic”, not committing to staying or leaving and were considered the least satisfied of all.

Mercer cites two factors in the declining engagement levels:  an evolving employment deal that employees have viewed as a series of takeaways; plus further actions taken in response to the economic downturn, such as cuts in pay, benefits, training, etc.  Mercer says that “from the employee viewpoint, not only has the deal been redefined, in many cases, the new deal is not being delivered as promised.”

This data started a discussion about what forward-thinking organizations are doing to improve employee engagement.  We decided to ask members of the TRACOM SOCIAL STYLE Group on LinkedIn for their thoughts on engagement.  Below are a selection of comments posted to the group along with links to the profiles of the contributor.

“Employees want to know that their personal vision is as important as their employer’s vision, and they want to know that they matter. With the Millennial generation, the message must be clear, consistent and expressed frequently. To the extent employees feel in control of their priorities (able to keep up) and that their efforts are being recognized as critical to achieving corporate goals, they feel engaged. All too often the most important person in the organization to them (their manager) is too busy to win their engagement. Engagement needs to be a strategic initiative and a key performance indicator for leaders and managers at every level.”
Posted by Bob Heavers

“Of course there are many factors creating low engagement today. The one I have focused on recently is the opportunity to grow and develop. I sincerely believe that if leaders put in place simple strategies for helping their team members to learn and to grow as a professional and individual, we could start bringing those poor engagement numbers down.”
Posted by rita graziano

“I’ve read some literature on and seen/observed how the greatest learning comes from peers (vs. managers) — so shadowing, shared road days, encouraging peer coaching and creating forums for sharing best practices – I believe, contribute to both high engagement and loyalty. (And particularly well-received by Expressives/Amiables.)”
Posted by David Marsi

Over the years I’ve talked to many people who aren’t performing or aren’t happy with their job. Helping them to be clear what they bring to their (ideal) role and what they want from it seems to get them back on track or gives them clarity that it’s time to move on. The Style clues people give out are a great check for consistency and prompt questions if something seems to be missing.”
Posted by Jim Wigg

What is your perspective on employee engagement?  Share your comments here on the TRACOM Performance Blog or join the TRACOM SOCIAL STYLE group on LinkedIn.

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