This is the Kind of Workplace Employees Across the World Want

Seven in 10 workers consider their job an important part of their identity

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By Pooja Singh


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Every boss wants to create a workplace where employees thrive. Not only does this benefit the company but also keeps the staff happy and productive. Given the entry of automation at the workplace, and the global economic, political and cultural change, the need for an effective, diverse workplace is increasing.

Bu how do you create one? Global communication agency Zeno Group recently conducted a study on the "Barriers to Employee Engagement" to look at employees' concerns about their workplace and how those issues, left unchecked, are standing in the way of effective engagement.

The survey, which included more than 4,500 employees in Singapore, Canada, the US and the UK, asked the people about their attitudes toward their jobs, the effectiveness of the communications they receive to perform in their roles, and their specific concerns around current issues prevalent in the workplace.

Some of the widespread concerns among employees were job loss due to automation and generational differences on issues such as work-life balance.

Longing to Belong

Over 40 per cent of the respondents globally said they are concerned about their own company's mission and values. Many said they "do not know what their company truly stands for or represents," ranging from 30 per cent in the US, 32 per cent in Canada, 37 per cent in the UK, and 54 per cent in Singapore. When it came to millennials, those born between 1982 and 2004, the level of concern about corporate values was greater, as much as 12 percentage points in the US and 13 percentage points in the UK.

Seven in 10 respondents considered their job "an important part of their identity." At the same time, 87 per cent globally say they want to work at a company where they "feel like part of a family," the study says.

The study's findings revealed demographic nuances as well. For example, employees with children were 37 per cent more likely to be concerned about their connection to company values than non-parents. Among that group, millennials in management are 55 per cent more likely to have concerns.

New Workplace Worries

The study findings confirmed that accelerating technology, work-life imbalance and information overload are major job stressors.

Forty per cent employees across the world are worried that new technologies could put them out of work. Geographically, the division was—32 per cent in the US, 35 per cent in Canada, 37 per cent in the UK. Singapore workers had the greatest concern at 59 per cent.

Despite flexible workplaces, the concept of balance remains a mirage for many workers. In the US, 57 per cent grapple with the issue, said the study. Notably, across all markets, it's millennials who are most concerned about the issue — as high as 65 percent in the US.

Along with their overall concern about these critical workplace issues, a majority of respondents globally believe their companies are "not making progress" on these issues.

The study suggests several strategies to address pressure and improve engagement, including listening beyond policies and procedures to add relevant societal issues, using focused research to uncover critical issues and sentiment among employees, changing the executive communications agenda to address employee pressure points, openly and productively, deploying a data-driven communications campaign for the entire executive team, and embracing network tools to cultivate internal influencer groups and ambassadors.

Pooja Singh

Former Features Editor, Entrepreneur Asia Pacific


A stickler for details, Pooja Singh likes telling people stories. She has previously worked with Mint-Hindustan Times, Down To Earth and Asian News International-Reuters. 

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