Why are British workers experiencing low engagement at work?

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Why are British workers experiencing low engagement at work?


This content is contributed or sourced from third parties but has been subject to Finextra editorial review.

Employee engagement is a hot topic right now, and rightly so. According to Gallup’s latest State of the Global Workplace report, UK worker engagement is just 8%, compared to 10% in Europe, 33% in North America, and 21% globally.

These abysmally low scores suggest that the majority of workforces in Western European countries are sitting, wishing, waiting, and watching the clock.

Why is this happening, particularly when the Western region of the continent has seen its daily stress levels decrease?

Leadership matters

Culture is often used to explain poor employee engagement, but it’s not the full picture.

According to Gallup, unfair treatment at work is the leading source of employee disengagement, followed by an unmanageable workload, unclear communication from managers, lack of support from managers, and unreasonable time pressures.

These five causes have one thing in common: your boss. A manager's effect on a workplace is so significant that Gallup analytics reveal that 70% of the variance in a team's engagement is explained just by how their boss acts. Get a bad one and you are almost guaranteed to emotionally disconnect from your job.

Gallup's analyses of engagement in Europe does flag some good news; while the majority of employees might be disengaged, they are not yet disgruntled.

Employees are waiting to be inspired. This generation of workers is expecting more from their employers in the form of meaning and purpose in their work, rather than just a way to make a living.

Meaning and purpose

Employee engagement is ultimately not about being obsessed with work. It's about having clear expectations, feeling connected to and supported by your team, and finding purpose in your work.

These are universal human needs. Across all cultures, research shows that when those needs are met, people respond with greater motivation, innovation, creativity, and passion.

Inclusive, diverse, and flexible company culture

Here is the thing: employee engagement isn’t just a feel-good concept; it’s a strategic imperative for success. Research consistently shows that engaged teams outperform their disengaged counterparts in revenue growth, profitability, and overall organisational performance.

Employee engagement levels vary across industries due to factors such as work nature and leadership styles, but it’s clear moving further into 2024, organisations are going to have to put in more effort to create an inclusive, diverse, and flexible company culture.

Progressive companies clued in to employee engagement trends will embrace hybrid work models, salary transparency, well-being initiatives, technology integration, DEI initiatives, personalised recognition and rewards, ongoing performance conversations, and opportunities for personal development. All of these collectively contribute to creating workplaces where employees feel valued, motivated, and connected to the organisation’s mission.

If this is not your current work experience, it might be time to move on. There are plenty of workplaces that are more supportive and prioritise employee engagement.

If it’s definitely a change you are after, discover hundreds of exciting opportunities on the Finextra Job Board right now.

Senior JavaScript Developer, SMG, London

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Part of Live Nation Entertainment, the world’s leading live entertainment company, Live Nation is seeking a Finance Analyst to join the UK and Ireland head office finance team, reporting to the head of FP&A.

You will need to have a keen eye for attention to detail when assisting in the preparation of the business’ consolidated actual, forecast, and budgeted reports and in regularly preparing key metric analysis for the US head office team for strategic decision making to drive the business forward.

If this is the opportunity you have been looking for, see the full job description here.

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Tunstall is a leading provider of connected care and health solutions. As Chief Architect you will lead a team of technology architects (enterprise, solution, and system) to define and continuously evolve the architectural strategy and roadmap, ensuring technical decisions are commercially viable, buildable, supportable, secure, and are designed to adhere to the defined principles and standards.

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This content is contributed or sourced from third parties but has been subject to Finextra editorial review.