New research is revealing a startling portrait of the American worker. The findings come from a nationwide survey of over 1,000 working adults conducted in February and March 2011 by the research firm Ipsos on behalf of Kenexa (NASDAQ: KNXA), a global provider of business solutions for human resources, and from the most recent Kenexa High Performance Institute WorkTrends Annual Report.
“This is eye-opening research,” said Rudy Karsan, Kenexa’s CEO, “and it says clearly that the employees who will see success in our recovering economy are the ones who think of the organizations where they work as ‘We,’ not ‘They’.”
The February/March 2011 poll said that 72% of working Americans refer to the organizations where they work as “We.” Only 20% refer to their organization as “They.”
Karsan is co-author (with Kevin Kruse) of the recently published New York Times bestseller entitled WE: How to Increase Performance and Profits Through Full Engagement.
The 2008 Kenexa Research Institute WorkTrends Report, for example, concluded that the top 25% of corporations as measured by employee engagement saw 5-year total shareholder return (TSR) of 18%. The bottom 25% of corporations as measured by employee engagement saw an approximately 4% negative 5-year TSR for the same period. (Kenexa bases its measurement of “engagement” on four components: “satisfaction,” “advocacy,” “retention,” and “pride”.)
The February/March 2011 poll conducted by Ipsos on behalf of Kenexa provides a fascinating snapshot of the views and attitudes of currently working Americans.
Among those findings:
–A full 60% of American workers believe they are paid fairly. Just over a third think they are underpaid (37%). How many say they are overpaid? Just 2%.
–Out of 7 factors impacting job security, one quarter of all surveyed workers (26%) chose “their own performance” as having the most impact, tied with the U.S. economy (also 26%).
–Americans are not looking to the federal government when it comes to providing job security. Only 10% think “the federal government is the factor that affects their job security the most.”
“The individuals who are in the workplace today think ‘there is no one else who’s going to look out for me; I need to do it myself,’” said Karsan. “This is a healthy, mature, and realistic way to approach the workplace.”
But not all is roses in the workplace. The survey found that 25% of workers reported being bullied by a supervisor. “This is a subject that is getting increasing attention, from the playground to the office,” noted Karsan. Women are slightly more likely to say they have been bullied than men (28% versus 22%).