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Friday, December 14, 2012

Engagement Is Up, Disengagement Down, Survey Says

American employers are boosting the number of fully engaged employees while the number of under-engaged employees declines.

That's the double dose of good news in a new survey of employee-engagement levels in the U.S. workforce by Modern Survey, a Minneapolis-based outfit that began its annual study five years ago.

Just released, its Fall 2012 National Norms Study on this topic found a 5-percentage-point increase in the number of fully engaged employees, to 13 percent from 8 percent. Its portion of moderately engaged employees stayed at 22 percent.

Meanwhile, Modern's survey showed that 37 percent of employees describe themselves as "under engaged," down 5 percent from 42 percent a year earlier. The portion self-identifying as "disengaged" remained at 28 percent.

A leading driver of engagement continues to be employees' confidence in the future of their companies. But when Modern Survey introduced a new factor as a potential key driver of engagement in this year's survey, it rose right to the top of employees' lists: "I have confidence in my company's senior management."

That result underscores the importance of a consistent and persistent focus on employee engagement by company leadership. 

And the relatively low number of "fully engaged" employees -- though up substantially percentage-wise from a year earlier -- highlights the vastness of the opportunity that lies before senior managers.

Employees want to follow enlightened leadership. And there's no better place to lead them than toward full engagement as employees.

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