The 2017 edition of Gallup’s State of the American Workplace report depicts the country’s current collective workplace as an interesting, evolving landscape. Gallup’s research reveals that American employees are increasingly aware of what they want in their jobs; simultaneously, the report suggests that employers have some catching up to do. In many companies, a modern learning system could help bridge the gap between the ambitious goals of leadership and the day-to-day reality of their employees. Here are 5 key findings from the Gallup report that learning and development can impact to help improve the American workplace.
1. 60% of employees say the ability to do what they do best in a role is “very important” to them
According to Gallup, for most American workers, the biggest factor in deciding whether or not to change jobs comes down to the opportunity to do what they are good at. Gallup further clarifies that phrase: “‘Do what I do best’ comes down to matching the right person, with the right role, in the right culture.” Of course, the first step of hiring the right person is priority number one. But organizations that have excellent team learning and employee development structures in place will offer their team members a chance to further improve their strengths and explore other areas they might like to develop through their tenure.
2. 51% of employees are not engaged—and haven’t been for quite some time
Modern companies recognize the importance of employee engagement. It has real, measurable impact on culture, which in turn impacts the bottom line. Gallup describes engaged employees as “enthusiastic, energetic, and positive employees who feel better about their work in the workplace.” Beyond attitude, engaged employees generate to other concrete benefits for their employers:
- Less turnover in high-turnover organizations
- Higher customer metrics
- Higher productivity
- Higher sales
The list goes on. And even though such benefits are numerous, engagement numbers have “barely budged over the past decade and a half” according to Gallup. A big part of engaging employees is giving them access to the information they need to do their jobs well. More employers need to utilize modern solutions like Lessonly to share such company knowledge.
3. Only 21% of employees strongly agree that their performance is managed in a way that motivates them to do outstanding work
The old saying “employees don’t leave a company, they leave a manager,” still rings true. And if—as Gallup reports—only 1 in 5 American employees believes their performance is managed in a way that benefits and motivates them, there’s clearly room for improvement.
Learning tools can and should greatly influence the discussions that happen between managers and their teams. One-on-one coaching and management sessions become opportunities to reinforce key ideas and strategies, and a modern learning system can carry additional detail, information, and helpful examples for employees to references as often as they need. Small adjustments like these can add up to help more employees feel better managed in their roles.
4. Only 13% of employees strongly agree the leadership of their organization communicates effectively with the rest of the organization
Emails, texts, tweets, Slack. There are so many ways for people and teams to communicate today, there’s no reason for so many employees to feel out of the loop with company leadership. Gallup lists a few steps that leaders can take to better convey organizational direction:
- Improve clarity and communication for employees who work on multiple teams
- Take employee engagement from a survey to a cultural pillar that improves performance
- Enable people to work successfully from locations besides the office
- Approach performance management in ways that motivate employees
- Design and deliver a compelling and authentic employer brand
Unsurprisingly, many of these suggestions are issues that Gallup already noted in its survey, and dealing with each of these issues may warrant additional communication from leadership to employees. However, few tools beat regular employee surveys as a means for gathering internal feedback and fostering dialog about what is really affecting employees on a day-to-day basis.
5. 51% of employees say they would change jobs for flextime
Even though over half of today’s workforce would change their job for flextime, only 44% of companies currently offer it. It’s understandable that some companies find it hard to manage teams on a non-traditional schedule, but as they say, the times are changin’. Modern, accessible learning solutions like Lessonly make it easier for employees to work outside of the normal time and geographic constraints of the past. With Lessonly, employees can work through learning and training material on their own schedule. Gallup also noted:
Employees whose organization allows them to change their hours and schedules as needed have higher levels of engagement and well-being than other employees.
Making company knowledge quickly accessible to employees when they need it is a great way to increase engagement and produce better work.
Build a stronger workplace with Lessonly
These are just a few suggestions on how companies can shift their workplace toward more productivity. Progressive companies, in America and around the world, use Lessonly to engage their employees. Take the next step toward a stronger workplace with a self-guided tour of Lessonly. Sign up today.