In 2013 the US Gallup data organisation released world-wide research information which is frightening for the work place. It suggested that only 13% of employees are “engaged” in their jobs, or emotionally invested in their work and focussed on helping their organisations improve. 13% – imagine that! Similarly 63% are not engaged – or simply unmotivated and unlikely to exert extra effort – while the remaining 24% are “actively disengaged” or truly unhappy and unproductive.
Actually it’s not so bad in Australia and the States with 24% and 29% respectively invested in their work. The other figures are slightly adjusted down, but only slightly. It shows that hundreds of thousands of workers (millions world-wide) are turning up to work with their tails between their legs. Little wonder that the statistics for anxiety, negative stress and depression in the workplace are frightening. Burnout is another way of describing it.
Only 13% of employees are “engaged” in their jobs.
A US doctor, Clark Gaither, who calls himself Dr Burnout, of course, talks about emotional exhaustion, depersonalisation, and a lack of a sense of personal accomplishment being the major hallmarks of burnout. Not only do the majority of workers – at all levels of the workforce – dread Mondays, long for the weekends or for time off, and hate what they do throughout the workday which never seems to end.
No wonder Social Media is so pervasive as it allows people to look out from their daily grind and see other people/friends in happier places. Bali for instance. But don’t be fooled. Alcohol, drugs, sun and a change of scenery are erotic stimulants until you wake up in the morning in a strange place. Back to work next week!
Don’t blame the company you work for. We are all in this together.
A miserable story. But have a close look in the mirror and work out where you might fit in this spectrum. You’ll be possibly shocked by what you see but you won’t necessarily be shocked by the fact that you are not alone. The bigger question is what you are going to do about it – and when you are going to get started. And don’t blame the company you work for. We are all in this together.
I come from a team-sport background. Whether you’re the manager, the coach, the star, a player, you all have something important to contribute. It’s amazing how a small percentage improvement in every area – say 5% – can have a dramatic improvement in performance and how this has a positive effect on everyone involved. You can see it on a footy field – you can feel it in the office.
Engage in the change
The first acknowledgement that has to be made is a willingness to change. If nothing changes, nothing changes. It’s so logical but seemingly so hard. The first change I always suggest is a change in mindset. From a glass half-empty to a glass half-full. You may not have the best job in the world but you have a job. You may not play in the best team in the world, but you are in a team.
So work it out that we are all in this game of life together. And the first key word to overcome these depressing Gallup figures is ENGAGEMENT. This is harder than it seems because it involves your mind and your brain. You have to want to do it. You possibly have to reprogram your brain but it’s amazing what you might discover- you can actually become who you really want to become. You can create new habits and rediscover the “real you.” Not only will your work day no longer be a drag, the same will happen to other components of your life. You will get energy back.
ENERGY means you won’t arrive home every night with your arse dragging. Imagine what this might mean to your partner and your kids waiting for you. Sad sack has gone. Energy is infectious. Whether in the workplace or at home or amongst friends, people will respond positively to you. Sleeping at the wheel of life is such a burden. It gets you no where. And speaking about “sack,” things will even change in that area. Who wants a bore in bed?
High energy brings INVOLVEMENT in life. This has a dramatic effect at work. You can’t help becoming glass half full and with a chance of filling up if you are enthusiastic, inspired, proud, and challenged. You will take others along with you. Rather than being the one at lunch in the canteen bemoaning the misery of your workplace, become the leader of change. Two things will change guaranteed. You will become a leader and financial benefits will come your way. You will stand out for all the right reasons.
You will be fully ABSORBED in your job. Engaged. Too many hours will become not enough hours to do all the things you want to do. And away from work you will want to achieve more things rather than consoling yourself with endless television and iPhone trivia, alcohol to deaden the pain.
Why do I know this? I’ve been there. How do I know you can change the way you are? I’ve done it. Is it worth it? You betcha. The workplace is waiting for you.