Halfway through 2023, workplace challenges pressing employers and employees are just as great today as at the beginning of the year. Employers continue to wrestle with retention, recruiting, productivity, and change – while employees are experiencing increased levels of stress, both at work and at home.
The release of Gallup’s State of Global Workplace 2023 Report shows the continuance of “quiet quitting” – in fact the majority of the world’s employees (nearly six in ten) fall into this category. Gallup estimates that combined with actively disengaged employees, low engagement costs the global economy $8.8 trillion.
Gallup found that employee stress has remained at record levels for two years in a row. In fact, 44% of employees worldwide said they experienced a lot of stress, and this was true for remote, hybrid, and on-campus workers. Engagement is a very important driver – much more important than work location. It may surprise many to discover that employee engagement has 3.8x as much influence on stress as location.
Reversing the “quiet quitting” trend isn’t going to be easy – but when those “quiet quitting” employees were asked what changes they would like to see in the workplace to make it better – their responses were straightforward.
“Engagement or Culture” was the largest category with 41%, followed by “Pay and Benefits” with 28%, and “Wellbeing” rounded out the top three with 16%.
What would those “quiet quitting” employees like to change about Engagement or Culture?
- For everyone to get recognized for their contributions
- If the managers were more approachable, and we could talk openly
- They should grant autonomy in the work to stimulate creativity
- They would like to learn things beyond their repetitive tasks
- They would like to be respected more
- They would like to see equity – giving everyone a fair opportunity for promotion
- They would like clearer goals and stronger guidance [stronger leadership]
Gallup has adapted its long-used descriptors of Engaged, Not Engaged, and Actively Disengaged to reflect today’s nomenclature.
- Engaged is described as “Thriving at Work”
- Not Engaged is described as “Quiet Quitting”
- Actively Disengaged is described as “Loud Quitting”
In the U.S., there has been a small shift from the previous year in all three categories. The overall picture is a decline in Engaged workers and an increase in Not Engaged and Actively Disengaged workers.
- Thriving at Work (Engaged) comprised 31% – a 2% decrease from the previous year
- Quiet Quitting (Not Engaged) made up 52% – a 1% increase from the previous year
- Loud Quitting (Actively Disengaged) comprised 17% – a 2% increase from the previous year
Gallup’s analysis has always been a helpful resource and I encourage you to download the 2023 report to see other important domestic, regional, and global metrics. While not the only key, engagement remains a significant part of meeting and overcoming today’s workplace challenges.