APA Center for Organizational Excellence: Good Company

Resources for Employers

Good Company Blog
big-bad-wolf.jpg

I was intrigued this past week when I noticed a new article coming out in the Academy of Management Annals. Perrigino, Dunford, and Wilson (in press) provide a review of a concept they termed work-family backlash. In the article, they emphasize that backlash from work-life balance (WLB) policies and practices can occur due to:

  • perceptions of inequity from policies and practices being available for some employees but not others;
  • stigmatization that occurs when employees use existing policies and practices, such as flextime or parental leave options;
  • negative spillover that occurs when employees who use WLB policies and practices end up experiencing more negative outcomes outside of work (e.g., those who feel compelled to work more hours when they work from home); and
  • strategic mismanagement, such as when the cost of such practices are poorly considered, when practices are rescinded due to a failure to produce desired results, or when policies exist but are not actually supported.

While an extensive body of literature does not yet exist regarding these issues, it is clear that the current research suggests that organizations need to be mindful of how they approach the issue of WLB. It certainly has become a trendy topic within contemporary organizations, and a fair amount of public opinion polling suggests that employees will stay or leave, at least in part, due to their perceived work-life balance.

Before you jump on the bandwagon

Yet, as this recent review emphasizes, if organizations want to benefit from these types of policies and practices, then the decision to offer them must involve more than simply a desire to jump on the WLB bandwagon. A systematic process needs to occur to ensure that the practices are well designed to meet the needs of the organization as a whole.

But there is a problem that occurs when the topic of work-life balance surfaces. There is no universal, accepted definition for work-life balance (or any of the myriad terms that are used). Specific WLB policies and practices often arise from many sources:

  • In response to a given need, perhaps identified as part of an annual employee survey;
  • As a way to improve retention, productivity or attractiveness to job candidates, whether or not evidence suggests that WLB issues are important;
  • As a way of keeping pace with competitors; and
  • Organically within a given work unit or department as a function of a manager’s or supervisor’s perspective on the issue.

The examples above highlight that specific WLB policies and practices may develop, not as a part of an overall strategy, but to serve specific tactical purposes. When that occurs, organizations run the risk of creating policies and practices that either fail to produce the desired results or produce unintended consequences.

Even if there is an overarching strategy, it is often assumed that practices, if well designed, will be also well implemented. In other words, as evidenced by Perrigino et al., there is a difference between availability and utilization.

Making work-life practices available for employees is only the first step

To ensure these practices are used, organizations need put forth effort to ensure:

  • These practices are a fit with the organization’s existing culture;
  • They align with assumptions and values of managers up and down the hierarchy;
  • Proper structures and processes exist to support these policies and practices; and
  • There will not be unintended negative consequences as a result of implementing them.

In other words, there is a lot of effort that needs to go into the development and implementation of WLB policies and practices if they are going to be effective. When it comes to developing a psychologically healthy workplace, organizations need to better understand where interventions are needed and what types of interventions are likely to produce the intended results. An important step in this process is ensuring that whatever policies and practices are designed are part of a holistic approach to organizational development.

Want to know more about building work-life balance through work flexibility? Check out APA's work-flex resource guide.


Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/thomashawk / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Editors note: This is one in a series of posts focused on articles published in the March 2018 special edition of Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, which addresses recent advances, issues and discoveries surrounding the neuroscience of coaching and consulting psychology. Each paper provides research and practical implications for those who want to enhance individual, team, and organizational effectiveness. Read more about consulting psychology on the CP&U blog.

Guest post by Elliot Berkman, PhD

cpb-150.gif

Humans are great at setting goals but not nearly as good at attaining them. Why? Countless resources have been dedicated to answering that question in academic fields including consulting psychology, management and social psychology. And even those efforts must be dwarfed by the cumulative time spent pondering the question by every human being who set a goal and failed to achieve it.

In a new paper in the Consulting Psychology Journal, I provide a conceptual framework to explain why behavior change can be so hard. The framework draws upon neuroscientific data as well as theory and research from social, cognitive and clinical psychology. The paper provides consultants and coaches with new, evidence-based tools to help their clients understand why they struggle to change their behavior. Insight into the underlying factors that make behavior change hard can highlight ways that clients and coaches can work together to overcome them.

As a researcher working at the interface of psychology and neuroscience, I've spent the past decade and a half considering how knowledge about the human brain can inform behavior change interventions. I've found that one of the most useful approaches is to divide behavior change into two broad components: the will and the way.

The will and the way

The way I'm using it here, the “will” refers to the motivational and emotional aspects of behavior change. The will is the “why” of behavior change. Why is the behavior important to you? Why do you want to change? Why now?

In contrast, the “way” refers to the cognitive and informational aspects of behavior change. The way is the “how” of behavior change. How is behavior change going to unfold? What skills and capacities does it require? What is the specific plan?

Both the will and the way are necessary for successful behavior change. A goal requires a will and a way. But neuroscience has revealed that the brain systems involved in those two sides of the behavior change coin are entirely different from each other. Likewise, the interventions that a coach can use to help a client who is struggling with behavior change would be very different if the problem were related to the will or the way.

Identify the problem

The first step for a coach is to identify the nature of the problem. Is the barrier to change a lack of knowledge, skill, or capacity? Then tools can be identified to address those “way” issues. Alternatively, perhaps the client knows what to do and how to do it, but just...can't. Then a motivational program is in order. And the options are not mutually exclusive: sometimes skill-building is required in addition to finding motivation. But, even in that case, it can be useful to acknowledge the distinction between the two and address them separately.

Learning new skills, abilities and information requires executive function, which is the term neuroscientists use to describe the “way.” A core feature of executive function is that it demands conscious attention, and we can only fully attend to one thing at a time. Deploying executive function to deal with one goal means that other goals are pushed into the mental background. In economic terms, there is an opportunity cost to deploying the way. That cost is reflected in the sense of effort. So, changing behavior can feel hard because it means directing your limited mental focus on one goal and ignoring others.

behavior-change-blog.jpg

Finding the reward

But what about cases when the skills and knowledge are there but the will is not? Why can it feel so hard to motivate to do something that you have the ability to do? In the Consulting Psychology Journal paper, I describe how motivation is intertwined with reward value, and reward value, in turn, is deeply influenced by past experience. An important consequence of this biological fact is that new behaviors are rarely as motivating as existing ones that have previously been rewarded. Why try that new exercise, for example, when it may or may not feel good and you know for sure that watching Netflix will be enjoyable?

Of course, people do engage in new behaviors and for a variety of reasons. It's not that new behaviors can't be rewarding, it's just that they'll usually be the underdog compared to alternatives that are well learned. The key for coaches and consultants is to help clients identify ways of engaging with new tasks that make them rewarding.

One such approach is to increase reward with personal sources of value by linking the new behavior with core values and beliefs that are central to a client's identity. Another is to increase reward with social value by leveraging social norms and interpersonal relationships to increase the importance of a goal. Both of these cases have an advantage over tangible forms of value, such as money, because they can be far more enduring and universal. Money runs out and doesn't have the same meaning for all people, but we all have core values and care deeply about our social ties.

Behavior change will always be hard. No advice can change that. But neuroscience can provide insights about how, when and why behavior change efforts succeed and fail. This knowledge can uncover new ways for coaches and their clients to promote change, and make behavior change seem less daunting in the process.

Elliot Berkman, Ph.D., is an associate professor of psychology, director of the Social and Affective Neuroscience lab, and co-director of the Center for Translational Neuroscience at the University of Oregon. He also directs Berkman Consultants, LLC, a consulting and custom research firm.

candies-ilovemyjob.png Every February, we host "I Love My Job" to highlight the positive aspects of work. We received submissions from people across the country who told us the reasons they love their job.

We feature our favorite submissions here, on Facebook, Twitter and other social media pages. The person or team who provides our favorite entry for the week receives some special treats to share with their co-workers.

Here is our final favorite from last month, sent to us from Joy Booth, owner/director of social media and community engagement for E.J. Wills Gastropub in McKinney, TX.

Joy shares what she loves most about her job:

"We founded our full-service bar and restaurant with the goal of bringing friends and flavor together and that has been our motto -- and stenciled on our walls -- since day one.

What brings us the greatest joy is watching our regulars befriend one another and introducing them to new people, new ways of combining ingredients, and new twists on traditional pub favorites. We like to think of ourselves as serving gourmet grub in a pub, and seeing people relax, have a great time with one another, enjoy the live music we present each week, and leave happier than when they came in is what warms our heart and brings us the greatest sense of satisfaction.

We may win awards for our burgers--and that is humbling and gratifying--but what makes us truly love our jobs are the personal notes we routinely receive from guests about how much they feel like family – that’s what really keeps us going!"

Thanks, Joy, for your submission. Look for a special delivery of treats as our appreciation for helping to spread the love.

clcc-sm.jpgEvery February, we host "I Love My Job" to highlight the positive aspects of work. We received submissions from people all across the country who told us the reasons they love their job. 

We feature the best submissions here, on Facebook, Twitter and other social media pages. The person or team who provides our favorite entry for the week receives some special treats to share with their co-workers. 

Here is one of our favorite submissions from last month, sent in by Jessica Wilde, executive assistant to the executive director for the Children's Law Center of California in Monterey Park, CA. 

On why she loves her job, here’s what Jessica had to share: 
"The Children’s Law Center of California (CLC) is a non-profit, public interest law firm that provides legal representation for tens of thousands of children impacted by abuse and neglect. We provide an unparalleled level of expertise in and out of the courtroom. Our highly skilled, passionate and committed attorneys, investigators, and support staff fight to ensure the well-being and future success of our clients through a multi-disciplinary, independent and informed approach to advocacy. We are a powerful voice for our clients fighting for family reunification, permanence, educational opportunity, health and mental health services, self-sufficiency and overall well-being. We are a driving force in local, statewide and national policy change and child welfare system reform. 
I love my job! I look forward to coming to work each and every day of the year for one simple reason: the people I work with. Each day, I get to spend my time working with some of the most dedicated, passionate, compassionate and generous people I have ever known. Everything they do is done with the “greater good” in mind -- no matter their title or how menial the task may seem in the moment.
In my department, we work hard to support the people on “the front lines” (the attorneys, investigators, and others who work directly with these children). In order to support the “troops”, all of us in Administration must support each other while simultaneously pushing ourselves and each other to be the best we can. We strive to make each other feel supported, special, valued, and challenged to be better today than they were yesterday. Every dollar we save or raise goes directly to our child clients and makes a real difference in their lives. Every event we organize helps our employees by relieving a little of the stress they endure working in such a difficult and emotionally draining position and industry. It is wonderful to be able to work with such amazing people and for such an amazing organization."
Thanks, Jessica, for your submission. Look for a delivery soon of special treats as our appreciation for helping to spread the love.
candies-ilovemyjob.png

Every February, we host "I Love My Job" to highlight the positive aspects of work. We're receiving submissions from people who are telling us the reasons they love their job.

We're featuring the best submissions each week here, on Facebook, Twitter and other social media pages. The person or team who provides our favorite entry for the week receives some special treats to share with his or her co-workers.

Send us your "I love my job" story or submission

Here is our favorite submission from last week, sent in by Nina Esaki, assistant professor of social work at Springfield College

Here is why Nina loves her job:

"I LOVE my job because it is centered around love for others. I am an assistant professor at the Springfield College School of Social Work in Springfield, MA. I am surrounded by professors and school administrators who are passionate about making the world a better place.
We each have our own unique areas of interest, personalities and backgrounds that create a beautiful tapestry from which students, the community, and we all benefit. Reciprocally, we have and continue to forge deep and authentic relationships with our students and community partners, so that we learn from them, and work toward fulfilling our goals of making the world a better place, especially for those who are often overlooked by others, and have a great time doing so! I believe our love for our work, grounded on our commitment to demonstrating kind and ethical behavior, allows us to create a safe and supportive community that benefits us all--both professionally and personally.
After years in the business sector having had to plan for and implement downsizing efforts, I switched into the field of social work almost 20 years ago to be "part of the solution," and could not have imagined how happy I would be now. Additionally, my colleagues support my need for balance in my life by respecting my weekly commute down to NY to be with my husband, family and close friends. And, lastly, my field of research interest happens to be organizational health, so I am fortunate to be working in a laboratory that proves that, yes indeed, it is possible to create a healthy organization!"
ILMJ-Esaki-blog.png

Thanks, Nina, for your submission. Look for a delivery soon of special treats as our appreciation for helping to spread the love.

What do you love about your job? Making a difference, working with fantastic colleagues, feeling proud of the organization you work for, having great benefits, something else? Tell us in writing or send us a photo or video.

grumpy-holiday.jpg

We have entered yet another holiday season. It is a time of giving, a time of celebration, and a time of pseudoscientific advice. Even passive readers of various business and management blogs and news stories will find themselves inundated with a plethora of advice (assuming past trends apply this year, of course).

One of the biggest pieces of pseudoscientific advice will likely focus on the need for managers and businesses to double down on stress management tactics during the holiday season. One of the recurring “truths” with which we will get peppered (as we already have here) is the belief that the holidays are a time during which depression, anxiety, and sadness spike.

This, of course, is a myth, robustly debunked by a variety of sources, including the Annenberg Public Policy Center, which reports that suicide rates are actually the lowest in December.

None of this means, of course, that employees are always a barrel of sunshine and rainbows during the holidays. There are employees who may have some added mental health concerns, such as those who may be having relationship difficulties and those who have recently lost a loved one. However, the belief that holiday stress is a major mental health problem is just plain hogwash.

For example, a 2015 Healthline survey found that only 18% of people reported the holidays were very stressful, with another 44% reporting they were somewhat stressful. However, in the most recent American Psychological Association Stress in America survey, 63% of Americans reported being stressed about the future of our nation, 62% reported being stressed about money, and 61% reported being stressed about work. Hence, being stressed during the holidays doesn’t seem to be radically different from the amount of stress people experience at other times of the year.

Now, all that being said, there are some issues that surface during the holiday season that are uniquely tied to the holidays. Many of these exist as a result of a sudden shift in the demands on people’s time, energy and money (this includes have-to and want-to demands). Holiday parties, shopping, decorating the house, extra cooking and cleaning and a host of other demands often get added to people’s plates during the month between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Unfortunately, for many people, this increase in demands does not come with corresponding increases in time, energy or money. Instead, most employees are expected to accomplish their regularly-scheduled demands in addition to holiday-specific ones. They may cut some corners (e.g., eating out more often, cutting back on sleep) as a way to meet the time and energy requirements of these added demands. This would explain why, according to a 2006 APA survey about the holidays, more people cite fatigue than they do stress, sadness or loneliness as a negative emotion they experience during the holidays.

So, while some people may experience holiday-specific stress, this stress would not necessarily seem to be all that much more severe than stress they experience the rest of the year. Still, there are opportunities for managers and employers to intervene to some degree. Primarily this might involve the deliberate refusal to add a bunch of demands that require employees to allocate additional time and energy to work. Holiday parties may seem like an ideal opportunity to show employees they are appreciated, but for many employees, these events could become an added demand for more time and energy (to accompany the regular work demands they already have to meet).

If managers and employers want to minimize increased demands and stress during the holidays, there are three very practical recommendations they can implement:

Ensure the added time required to participate in work-related holiday festivities is accompanied by reduced expectations in other areas of work. This may sound counterproductive to the goals of corporate America, but if we want employees to be engaged in our attempts to show them how appreciated they are, these appreciation efforts cannot add time, energy, and financial demands. Otherwise, we run the risk of adding to employee stress instead of reducing it.

Offer greater workplace flexibility. Whenever possible, offer a bit more flexibility in terms of when and where employees work. Give them an opportunity to move more seamlessly between work and non-work demands so they can more effectively meet various non-work, holiday-related demands that may require added coordination. This will allow employees to spend less time and energy worrying about competing demands and more time and energy actually meeting those demands.

Allow employees to utilize some of the time off they have accrued. This can be somewhat tricky as there are often a lot of deadlines that correspond with the end of the calendar year. However, a rigid requirement to be in the office is antithetical to a desire to alleviate holiday stress. Limits may have to be set on how much time off employees can take due to impending deadlines, but any active support on this front is likely to make a difference. In addition, the greater the control employees have over which days they have off, the greater the likelihood those days will be used to respond to the demands that add to holiday stress.

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dapuglet / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Hurricane Relief poster-300w.jpg

Natural disasters occurring one after another can often leave employees feeling helpless. However, your organization can empower its employees to give back to the world around them in small but meaningful ways. The American Psychological Association realizes the importance of supporting employees in this way, and also acknowledges that giving back is good for their physical and mental health. Emotions and behaviors that are others-focused are associated with better well-being, health and longevity. Yes, being altruistic could help you live longer!

So how does APA encourage its employees to help the world around them? First of all, we have a Go Casual Day every two months during which employees can wear denim to work if they donate to one of two designated charities. The organizations are chosen and vetted by a staff committee, the Neighborhood Opportunities for Volunteer Activities (NOVA) group, made up of representatives from across the organization. While NOVA is in charge of the vetting process, any employee can make charity recommendations to the group at any time. Not only are employees happy to be wearing jeans, but they feel good knowing that they are helping a cause.

The Go Casual Days are planned well in advance, but sometimes there’s a last-minute cause that deserves the attention of the organization. For example, recently the Staff Initiatives Office received many requests from staff asking how we could help those affected by the hurricanes. We quickly organized a Go Casual for Harvey Victims fundraiser, and we raised $2,910 for Direct Relief and Houston Food Bank. This was an easy way for employees to give back without having to spend time researching on their own or traveling somewhere else to donate.

Other hurricanes followed Harvey, so we needed a more long-term solution to support disaster relief. We devised a system so employees could donate on their own to whichever organization they choose, email the amount to us or drop it into a jar anonymously in the building lobby, and we have been tracking it on a large thermometer in the lobby. Employees could support the charity of their choice and feel that they are helping build momentum for a bigger effort.

Our Executive Management Group donated some of their contribution funds to hurricane relief as well, and in the course of a month we have already donated nearly $20,000 toward hurricane relief in various states and countries. This is incredible for those affected by the hurricanes, but It also has effects on the employee, as research shows that giving, and even just thinking about giving, is linked to improved health and well-being.

Your employees may not be able to travel to another country to give direct aid in times of disaster, but there are plenty of other ways they can help, and it’s even better if your organization can be supportive and remove barriers in this process. It’s important to think about what your staff truly need at a specific moment in time when deciding which programs to implement. Though giving $5 to wear jeans may seem small, its effects are far-reaching, both to the communities that need help, to your organization, and to your employees.

Tara Davis is director of APA's Staff Initiatives Office.

whole-foods.jpg

Whole Foods gets acquired by Amazon, and, of course, the news is abuzz about how this is going to change the way Americans obtain their groceries. However, there are also commentaries surrounding whether or not this means that the Conscious Capitalism approach taken by Whole Foods is a failure. Of course, this particular issue can be debated, but what’s clear is that being “a great place to work” does not guarantee success, regardless of what all the best employer lists might lead us to believe. Though the focus appears to be on “nailing employee engagement,” throughout much of the practitioner and business community, the Whole Foods acquisition and what has led up to it offers a warning for the employee engagement evangelists.

When examining the past five years of stock performance, Whole Foods reached its peak in October 2013, trading at over $65 per share and reached its low point in October 2016, trading at around only $28 per share. Even the boost from the Amazon acquisition of Whole Foods only bumped the price to around $43 per share, which is still almost 34 percent less than its peak price.

During the past five years, though, Whole Foods has not missed Fortune’s 100 Best Places to Work List (it finished at No. 58 in 2017), an award that largely emphasizes the perks employees receive. In fact, the four highlighted items from the Fortune survey for Whole Foods involve the percentage of employees who agreed they are able to take time off, can be themselves, are treated as full members of the company and feel a sense of pride.

What can be made of this conundrum? How can a company be performing so well when it comes to employee engagement and yet so poorly when it comes to stock price? The answer, much to the chagrin of the employee engagement crowd, is that being a great place to work is only part of the equation. When being a great place to work comes at the expense of business performance, it puts the entire company at risk.

In case you do not believe that was part of the problem, even Whole Foods CEO John Mackey admitted that the company prioritized its employees at the expense of customers, which hurt the company for several years. Employees loved working for the company, but customers were disappearing, and, long term, that is not a recipe for success.

But that’s what happens when a company is so focused on being a great place to work instead of also trying to optimize key performance metrics, such as financial performance. The belief that focusing on employees first will inevitably result in long-term viability is a mistaken one, one that Bob Corlett soundly argued against four years ago.

Employee engagement, like other types of initiatives (e.g., wellness programming) has almost taken on a panacea-like aura, with many consultants and practitioners treating it as a magic bullet that will cure all the ills for organizational performance. But there is no magic bullet, no wand to be waved. Long-term, sustainable, organizational performance requires attention to the entire business, not just one or two elements that contribute to it. While Whole Foods may have become an employer of choice, it slowly lost the mantle of grocery store of choice for many of its original customers. And that is a lesson from which many organizations could learn.

Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/brokentrinkets / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Don’t let your Work, Stress and Health conference experience be one of all work and no play. Take a break, get outside, find a piano and make some music. Send a video of your very impromptu performance – whether it’s a Chopin or a BangOnSomeKeys -- and you could be the recipient of one of APA’s leading books on workplace well-being.

Painted pianos are located throughout downtown Minneapolis for a public arts project, Pianos on Parade. Local artists painted the pianos with scenes representing summer in the city. Beyond being visually interesting, the pianos can be played by anyone.

We took note of this interactive art, and think it can be key to enjoying the city. We hope WSH conference attendees will tune in. (Puns intended.) Here’s how:

  • Explore the city and find an outdoor piano (Hint: there is one very close to the Hilton).
  • Position fingers on the keyboard and play – it doesn’t have be a concerto or even Chopsticks. Make up your own song if you want. We’ll never know!
  • Capture your performance on video. (This step works best if you’re accompanied by a fellow attendee or colleague whom you trust with your smartphone or camera.)
  • Send the video by email to abrownawell@apa.org or upload it to Twitter, mentioning @apa_excellence and using the conference hashtag, #wsh2017. If you email the video, we’ll upload it and share on Twitter. We’ll retweet any Twitter submissions.

We’ll randomly select one of the submissions to receive a copy of “The Psychologically Healthy Workplace: Building a Win-Win Environment for Organizations,” edited by Matthew Grawitch, PhD, and David Ballard, PsyD, with APA’s Center for Organizational Excellence.

To get started, here's Candy Won, APA's director of convention and meetings, playing a short song as a group of APA staff returned to the hotel from a lunch break.

playing-piano.JPG

Engagement’s in a dire state! Workers are disengaged! Employees are going to turn over in droves! If you read much of what is written about engagement in the workplace, that conclusion might seem obvious.

However, the results from the American Psychological Association’s 2017 Work and Well-Being Survey offer a different take on this topic. As it turns out, 31 percent of American workers report experiencing work engagement fairly often (at least once a week but as high as every day), falling into the high or very high categories, and 47 percent report experiencing engagement an average amount of time (defined as somewhere between “a few times a month” and “once a week”). Only 21 percent reported experiencing work engagement less often than that.

On a 7-point scale (ranging from 0 to 6), the mean score for respondents in 2017 was 3.83, and, as I recently pointed out in a previous post regarding past data, these results represent a fairly normal distribution with a slight negative skew.

In other words, there is no epidemic of disengagement, though, admittedly, there is definitely room for improvement.

And there appears to be a reasonably strong association between work engagement frequency and planned retention (see figure below). In the very low engagement group, for example, more than 56 percent of respondents planned to stay with their employer for two years or less, with only 20 percent planning to stay for 10 years or more. This can be easily contrasted with those in the very high engagement group, where a little more than 11 percent planned to stay for two years or less and more than 56 percent planned to stay for 10 years or more.

blog-chart.png

Other insights can be gleaned when the work engagement results from 2017 are compared to those from the 2014 Work and Well-Being Survey.

  • High engagement frequency (the percentage of high or very high) is up by about 8 percent (31 percent in 2017 vs. 23.2 percent in 2014).
  • Low engagement frequency (the percentage of low and very low) is down by about 4 percent (21 percent in 2017 vs. 25.2 percent in 2014).
  • Average engagement frequency is down by about 5 percent (47 percent in 2017 vs. 51.6 percent in 2014).

These results point to a slight uptick in work engagement (the mean in 2014 was 3.62 compared to 3.83 in 2017), but in general indicate that work engagement has shown a fair amount of consistency across the two time points.

Therefore, regardless of what the alarmists might scream from the mountaintops, there is not a disengagement epidemic. However, managers and senior leaders should recognize that there is room for improvement when it comes to the frequency with which employees experience work engagement.

In both 2014 and 2017, work engagement and organizational trust were highly predictive of employee well-being (accounting for more than 50 percent of the variance in each survey). How workers perceive various types of psychologically healthy workplace practices demonstrate fairly strong correlations with both work engagement and trust.

  • Employee perceptions of involvement, growth and development, and health and safety were most predictive of work engagement.
  • Employee perceptions of involvement, recognition and communication were most predictive of trust.
  • These same variables were identified in both the 2014 and 2017 surveys, accounting for about 28 percent of the variance in work engagement and 40-50 percent of the variance in trust.
As such, organizations may want to allocate effort and resources toward shoring up various psychologically healthy workplace practices, as these efforts may produce benefits for trust, engagement and even overall retention.

Subscribe

Bookmark

  • Bookmark and Share

Monthly Archives