What do Employees Really Want?

Jan 16 00:36 2005 Megan Tough Print This Article

A major problem for business owners and ... today is getting the best ... and then keeping them. Sounds easy, but any employer will tell you that these ... take up the most time and

A major problem for business owners and employers today is getting the best employees and then keeping them. Sounds easy,Guest Posting but any employer will tell you that these activities take up the most time and have the biggest impact on business results. So how do you go about retaining the good people once you’ve found them?

Understanding what your employees want from a workplace sounds like a logical place to start. After all, if you know what your employees are after, you simply need to provide it and all will be well. This is a great theory, but research shows that employers are not that successful at identifying what their employees actually want. In fact there is a significant disconnect between the things that employees say are important to them, and how highly employers rank those same things.

This survey first came out in 1946 in Foreman Facts, from the Labor Relations Institute of NY and was produced again by Lawrence Lindahl in Personnel magazine, in 1949. This study has since been replicated with similar results by Ken Kovach (1980); Valerie Wilson, Achievers International (1988); Bob Nelson, Blanchard Training & Development (1991); and Sheryl & Don Grimme, GHR Training Solutions (1997-2001).

When asked to rank a list of ten criteria, the employees and managers/owners ranked them very differently:

WHAT EMPLOYEES SAY THEY WANT (in order)
1.Full appreciation for work done
2.Feeling ‘part’ of things
3.Sympathetic help on personal issues
4.Job security
5.Good wages
6.Interesting work
7.Promotion/growth opportunities
8.Personal loyalty to workers
9.Good working conditions
10.Tactful discipline

WHAT MANAGERS THINK EMPLOYEES WANT (in order)
1.Good wages
2.Job security
3.Promotion/growth opportunities
4.Good working conditions
5.Interesting work
6.Personal loyalty to workers
7.Tactful discipline
8.Full appreciation for work done
9.Sympathetic help on personal issues
10.Feeling ‘part’ of things

What does this mean if you are an employer or a manager in business today?

Frequent pats on the back will go a long way towards making your employees more satisfied at work. Happily, it’s not always about the money.

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Megan Tough
Megan Tough

Megan Tough, director of Action Plus, works with small business professionals who are ready to do more than ‘just get by’. Increase your income - decrease your stress! To learn more and to sign up for more FREE tips and articles like these, visit www.megantough.com

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