We recently posed the question of who’s responsible for engagement among employees and managers alike. While there is no definitive answer, it’s clear that employee engagement is an ongoing issue for many companies.
In fact, it’s such an issue that 86% of global HR and business leaders cited leadership as a top issue in 2016.1 Furthermore, Gallup notes that managers who are not engaged cost the U.S. economy anywhere between $319 billion to $398 billion annually.2 If it costs the entire U.S. economy billions, imagine how it’s affecting your company (on a much lower scale of forgiveness).
Employees and managers will agree that having an open line of communication between each other will encourage productivity and development. But achieving that communication doesn’t come easily.
1. Only 17% of employees rate communication from their company’s top leader and senior leadership highly .3
2. More than 67% of millennials believe it’s management’s job to provide accelerated development opportunities to encourage them to stay.4
3. Only 26% of employees agree that “my employer listens and responds well to me.”3 Which means 74% of employees do not agree with this statement.
So how can we fix this from the C-Level on down?
Ask employees what’s working and what needs improvement. Every experience will be different and you’ll probably get a million and one suggestions, but really examine the feedback. I’ll bet you’ll find an underlying theme. Whether a marketing or engineering team, communication and transparency will play a large role in making improvements for managers and company leadership.
Before entering into a management role, consider the responsibility. It’s more than telling others what to do. It’s taking a group of individuals and creating a team. It’s being a leader, a coach, a role model, and fostering the team you’ve built. Company executives should take care when considering employee promotions to manager levels. It takes more than making sales, completing projects, and time, to understand what it takes to be a leader in the workforce.
It will cost you more than a few unhappy employees, it could cost your company (and the U.S. economy) several thousands of dollars placing the wrong individual in a management role.
1 Deloitte, February 2015
2 Gallup, April 2015
3 Employees Rising, April 2014
4 Deloitte, February 2015