Baby boomers most engaged with their jobs, prize career advancement most
Unlike workers around the world, North American employees are less engaged with their jobs, according to the latest study conducted by Aon Hewitt. This annual study polls more than 2,500 organizations representing 3.8 million employees.
The study defines engagement as “the psychological and behavioral outcomes that lead to better employee performance” and motivate employees to “say” (good things about the organization), “stay” and “strive.”
Globally, employee engagement and perception of their overall work experience showed “modest” improvement in 2012 over the previous year, 60 percent vs. 58 percent. Workers around the world give significantly ratings to effective communication on the job (up 7 percentage points), leadership (up 6 percentage points) and managing performance, innovation, and job recognition (each up 5 percentage points).
Engagement scores dropped though in sense of accomplishment and customers (each down 3 percentage points) and organization reputation (2 percentage points).
North American workers reported a slight dip in employee engagement in 2012, 63 percent, down from 64 percent in 2011.
Career opportunities topped the list of six job engagement drivers for the fifth consecutive year, the survey found, but just under half of employees (47 percent) think they have good advancement opportunities at their organizations. The second most important engagement driver globally is reputation, followed, surprisingly, by pay (which rose to No. 3 in 2012 from No. 6), then employee recognition, inter-organization communication, and enabling performance.
Of the different generations, baby boomers expressed the most engagement in their jobs (65 percent), followed by Gen Xers (58 percent) and Millennials (55 percent). Career opportunities and organization reputation are the two most important engagement drivers across all age levels, but recognition is most important to Millennials, while innovation is most important to Gen Xers.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.