Surprising Findings on Workers' Views About Their Jobs


Two interesting studies are out that reveal just how happy and committed workers are at their jobs.

In one report, researchers found that a company's low performers - and not the company's best workers - actually reported being more motivated and engaged in 42 percent of the 207 companies surveyed. So clearly, job performance doesn't predict employee engagement. And it's employee engagement (in other words, a worker's commitment, involvement and satisfaction) that largely drives businesses to succeed.

Many factors go into engagement measures, including wages, career advancement opportunities and how employees feel about their company.

The findings suggest that many organizations are allowing their lowest performers to just get by because they're not holding them accountable for their work, says Mark Murphy, CEO of Leadership IQ, the consulting firm that conducted the survey. And that may make middle and high performers in those firms feel less motivated to come to work every day.

[ Read: Interview Questions You Should Never Ask]

In a separate study, workers around the world say they are slightly happier in their jobs now than they were over the last several years,  even though only 1 in 4 think they're paid what they're worth.

Researchers at Aon Hewitt, a human resources consultancy, studied more than 2,500 companies representing 3.8 million workers worldwide to measure employee engagement.

Overall, engagement levels rose to 60 percent in 2012, up from 58 percent in 2011 and 56 percent in 2010, according to the annual study released Tuesday.

Yet some of the key findings in the study indicate workers are less than satisfied in certain areas.

For instance, only:

  • 47 percent of workers say they have advancement opportunities at work.
  • 44 percent of employees think they are paid fairly for their contributions.
  • 49 percent of workers think their company is effective at communication.
  • 48 percent of employees say they've been recognized for their extra efforts.

Photo: Boston Public Library/flickr


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