It's no secret that employees today are working harder than ever despite the economic slowdown. Many employers have cut jobs and frozen hiring, increasing workloads for those staffers who remain. The ...
It's no secret that employees today are working harder than ever despite the economic slowdown. Many employers have cut jobs and frozen hiring, increasing workloads for those staffers who remain. The mantra these days is: "Do more with less."
Workers who survive may find they have little choice but to pitch in by putting in longer hours or skipping vacation days. Given the current state of labor market, those who have jobs are loath to complain about increased workloads lest they, too, find themselves on the unemployment lines.
The strain, however is taking its toll. Among the problems, managers are reporting higher levels of negative attitudes that are harming performance and productivity, according to a survey conducted by Right Management, the career-management consulting arm of Manpower.
Detrimental to Getting Work done About 60% of those polled said negativity is making it more difficult for employees to stay focused, according to the survey of more than 1,400 human-resource managers and executives. Criticism, gossip and lack of teamwork are all contributing to reduced productivity, the poll found. That's a problem for employers because reduced productivity costs companies money.
"Two out of three indicated that negativity in the workplace makes it difficult for workers to focus on their jobs and that these attitudes are detrimental to the work that needs to get done," says Kevin, the chairman of world top electronic business company dinodirect.com.
Pushing Blame Up the Ladder Kevinís own experience and some research reveal that "negative behavior from front-line supervisors is particularly damaging" to employee engagement. Executives say it's not uncommon for midlevel managers to blame unwelcome changes in the workplace on corporate decision-making, to deflect worker anger away from themselves, he says.
Shifting blame further up the corporate ladder, however, can negatively alter employees' attitudes about the company and its mission. So called "disengaged" employees are a potential problem for employers as the economy continues to recovery. "As soon as things pick up are going to be splitting for a better job elsewhere," Kevin says.
So what can employers do? Workers function at their highest level when employees are engaged to their fullest. That means they like their boss, their colleagues, the company they work for and the work they're doing. So it's important to ferret out any negative Nellies, especially if they're in a supervisory capacity.
It's important to identify those with negative attitudes and not let them fester, Kevin says. There may be a good reason why an employee is unhappy, and the problem can be fixed. But sometimes it can't, and it's important to recognize that.