With all the hiring difficulties employers are facing now, many are so focused on securing new talent, current employees’ needs get pushed to the backburner. Employers might make the incorrect assumption that if employees are staying with the company, they must be happy.
But this isn’t always true. According to a Perceptx study, one in three employees are unhappy and unmotivated in their jobs – yet they have no plans to leave.
Dubbed the “working dead,” it’s crucial employers correct this, because no employee does great work when they lack motivation and engagement.
So why are these employees so unhappy? Perceptyx identified three major workplace factors that impact employee experience the most.
- Basic needs. Turns out, the basics are really important. Working with the proper tools in a respectful environment have a big effect on the employee experience. Often, a lack of good management drives workers out the door.
- Fitting into the company’s future. Employees aren’t going to want to stay if they feel like they don’t fit into the company culture, or there’s no way to grow within the company. If someone can’t envision their future at their workplace, they’re going to disengage.
- Healthy workplace climate. A physically and psychologically safe workplace is paramount – especially after experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic. Employees want to work somewhere the stress is manageable and they can stay physically healthy.
So how can you tell which of your employees are the disengaged ones? It’s not always obvious. Some may be keeping up with their work and seem fine, while really struggling internally.
Perceptyx identified four distinct personas your employees have, and its report delved into what these personas want, and how you can meet their unique needs.
1. The Energized
Nine percent of employees surveyed fall in “The Energized” persona. These workers are go-getters who aim to spend their whole careers at their current companies.
If they were to leave their company, it would only be because an opportunity arose that they couldn’t refuse. These employees act as a company’s unofficial brand ambassadors and will likely refer future hires.
As for the three major workplace factors, The Energized believe their basic needs are being met consistently, their work environment is physically and emotionally healthy, and company leaders are setting them up with a clear future.
2. The Contented
Forty-four percent of employees embody “The Contented” persona. These workers make up the largest portion of the workforce and are often considered the backbone of the company.
The Contented have a positive attitude about their companies, though they aren’t as vocal about it as The Energized. They feel passionate about their jobs, and while they have no current plans to quit, they could be convinced for the right opportunity.
This persona has their basic needs met regularly, their work environment isn’t actively detrimental to their health, and leaders have done an adequate job providing them with growth opportunities.
3. The Disconnected
Thirty-four percent of employees embody “The Disconnected” persona. These employees are far more likely to leave their company sooner rather than later. However, the bigger issue is when they stay, but phone it in.
These employees will only do the bare minimum of what’s required, because they feel their leaders aren’t investing in them. Their basic needs are met inconsistently, their work environment is having a negative impact on their wellbeing, and leadership is giving mixed messages about the company’s future.
4. The Neglected
Thirteen percent of employees embody “The Neglected” persona. These workers are twice as likely to resign than any other group. They’re burned out and feel hopeless working for a company they want to leave.
The Neglected’s basic needs aren’t being met, the work environment is damaging their physical and mental health, and they see no future with their company.
It’s important to address The Disconnected and The Neglected personas before it’s too late. Here are Perceptyx’s strategies to turn things around:
- Assess. Leaders should take a close look at their listening strategy. Do you conduct an employee satisfaction survey? Have the questions been updated recently? And, if your survey doesn’t include questions about the three major workplace factors (basic needs, healthy workplace climate, fitting into the future), you’ll want to add those.
- Analyze. It’s important to pinpoint where you’re falling short. There’s no single survey that will help you identify the problem areas. After you collect your basic information, you’ll need to analyze it and probe deeper. You can engage certain groups of employees in meetings and dialogues so they can be part of the solution.
- Act. Listening and collecting your data is only half the battle. Look for ways to remove stumbling blocks and issues employees pointed out. It’s also important to continue having these conversations to ensure your solutions were successful.