Are the latest changes in the world of work keeping you up at night? From faltering trust in managers to the potential of robots replacing jobs, employees and organizations alike may be concerned about what the future holds for the workplace.
While it’s tempting to fret about the bad news, the truth is that organizations can manage this year’s worrisome workplace trends by knowing and acting on them.
Here are some of the most concerning insights Gallup has discovered this year -- and how to turn them around in your organization.
1. Only 23% of U.S. employees strongly agree that they trust the leadership of their organization.
Few employees trust the people in charge. This raises a serious question about morale in American businesses and coincides with a historic decline in employee engagement. Simply put, organizations have reason to be concerned -- employees’ trust in leadership is dismal.
But there is some good news: When employees strongly agree that their leaders implement three specific actions, 95% of them can gain that trust back.
2. Only 23% of employees strongly agree that they get the right amount of recognition for the work they do.1
Employees rarely receive as much recognition as they’d like, and only 10% strongly agree they have been asked how they prefer to be recognized and appreciated in the first place. A great manager’s most important habit is providing meaningful feedback, but what counts as meaningful for each employee can make the process of giving recognition feel tricky.
Employees who feel they get the right amount of recognition are four times more likely to be engaged at work, but that’s only one of the critical steps in empowering managers to act as coaches.
3. More than half of employees (53%) say they don’t feel prepared to work with AI, robotics or other advanced technologies.
Most employees don’t feel ready for AI. But among CHROs, 72% see AI replacing jobs at their organization in the next three years, and 65% believe AI can be used to improve performance in most roles.
These perspectives reflect a concerning disconnect between employees and employers. Workplaces will need to provide AI skills training and development to avoid blindsiding their workers.
4. Fifty-one percent of currently employed workers around the world say they are watching for or actively seeking a new job.
Picture your two best people -- now think about what it would take to replace one of them if they left your organization tomorrow. Recruiters are coming after your star employees, and leaders need to be ready.
More than half of workers are thinking about leaving their organization, and 53% believe it’s a good time to find a job where they live. To ensure that employees remain committed to your organization, leaders need to deepen relationships with star talent and have more meaningful conversations, among other strategies.
5. Only two in 10 employees feel connected to their organization’s culture.
The symptoms of a broken organizational culture are as clear as day. Stalled initiatives, deteriorating morale and bad customer feedback are clear signs employees aren’t connected to their company’s culture. And when an organization’s culture is in trouble, everything becomes harder to accomplish.
It’s time for leaders to recognize that there’s no quick fix for culture-building -- it must be executed in four clear steps.
6. Only four in 10 employees report unethical behavior at work if they have firsthand knowledge of it.
Despite nine out of 10 workers saying they would report unethical behavior, few do. Quiet quitting is multiplying in workplaces, and with it comes the widespread feeling that it’s simply not worth it to speak up about problems at work.
There’s a reason employees are giving their employers the silent treatment, and organizations need to find ways to break the silence.
Gallup’s numbers tell a story -- there’s work to do in the modern workplace. While your organization might seem like it’s doing well, there’s often more happening than meets the eye.
Solutions often begin by asking the right questions: Are your employees engaged, connected to your culture and invested in leadership’s goals? If you don’t know, find out. Being responsive to employees and the changing workplace ensures your organization won’t have to grapple with failed hopes and broken morale.
Stay ahead of the pack on workplace trends.
- Track what matters most in workplaces with Gallup’s workplace performance indicators.
- Sign up for the Gallup at Work newsletter and get the latest workplace advice and discoveries delivered straight to your inbox twice monthly.
- Discover how the world’s employees feel about their workplaces in our latest State of the Global Workplace report.