The most recent study of the American workplace has been released by the Gallup organization. The news isn't good. On average, only about 30 percent of all American workers say they feel engaged at work. More than half of the 150,000 workers polled said they basically sleepwalk through the day. And only 30 percent of those surveyed said they really like their jobs. Why so much discontent? There are many reasons, of course. But based on the survey questions, I would say that a primary reason (which is often overlooked) is that the workplace is so impersonal and non-relational. Workers don't feel appreciated or valued.
Here's the questions that Gallup asked in the survey. Those questions in bold letters are related to the relational, personal qualities of the workplace.
1. I know what is expected of me at work.
2. I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right.
3. At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day.
4. In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work.
5. My supervisor, or someone at work, seems to care about me as a person.
6. There is someone at work who encourages my development.
7. At work, my opinions seem to count.
8. The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important.
9. My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing quality work.
10. I have a best friend at work.
11. In the last six months, someone at work has talked to me about my progress.
12. This last year, I have had opportunities at work to learn and grow.
You can see that half of the questions aimed to find out how workers feel about the quality of relationships at work. Given the dismal responses, we can assume that today's workplace would be greatly improved if it could simply be more personal. This is a basic human need that is not being met for most American workers.
One of the core values of the Global Commerce Network is to renew the workplace, to make work more personal. It's up to use to make the changes necessary so that the experience of work fits with how we are wired.
What can you do to make a difference?