This summer Gallup released its State of the Global Workplace: 2023 Report. The primary call to action? Change the way your people are managed. Gallup estimates that low engagement costs the global economy $8.8 trillion, or 9% of GDP.
Low employee engagement results in lost customers and lower profits, as well as decreased overall well-being in and outside of work. And what do people do when they’re unhappy with their jobs They quit. Or because the market has shifted and the Great Resignation has slowed, they “quiet quit.” In fact, 59% of employees globally consider themselves to be quiet quitting.
Related Reading: Quiet Quitting: An Avoidable Trend
The term “quiet quitting” was actually coined over a decade ago by an economist, and it refers to an employee doing the bare minimum requirements of their job to be able to keep their position but achieve greater work-life balance (source).
This 59% of employes who are quiet quitting fall right in the middle of the spectrum; they aren’t thriving at work and they don’t feel connected to their team or organization, but they also aren’t actively disengaged, undercutting organizational goals.
The upside? This type of employee presents the best opportunity to build a bridge. To change the way they are managed to better inspire and motivate. But to change the way your leaders manage their teams, you also need to change what you’re measuring and holding people accountable to.
What’s Informing Your KPI Approach?
Let’s start with a question. If a company is focused on employee productivity, centers leadership team discussion around productivity, and holds managers accountable primarily to their team’s productivity, what does that say about what the company values? I’ll give you a hint… it might be productivity.
And when productivity is the most prevalent talking point in one-on-ones, how do you think leaders manage their teams? Likely in a way that would drive their employees to quit.
Now of course, every company wants their employees to be productive! But to focus on it solely would be a costly mistake. It feels counterintuitive but think about the cost of employee churn.
Depending on the level of seniority, the financial burden fluctuates. For hourly workers, it costs an average of $1,500 per employee. For technical positions, the cost jumps to 100 to 150 percent of the employee’s salary. At the high end, C-suite turnover can cost 213 percent of salary. When you factor in the hits to morale and brand that come with high turnover, the cost is just too much.
So while we all want productive teams, it truly pays to ALSO focus on things like well-being, belonging, happiness, and engagement.
A Fresh Approach to KPI-ing
To manage better, you need to measure better. Here are two of my favorite metrics that can fuel the Future of Work era and help leaders measure differently.
Division of Labor Equity (DOLE): Research indicates that on average, women perform 200 more hours of non-promotable work every year compared to their male counterparts. In mixed-gender groups, women also tend to volunteer for non-promotable tasks (NPTs) 50% more than men do. NPTs include things like taking meetings notes, ordering lunches, or organizing office parties. There is often a gap in how labor is divided in many companies, and it stretches across the lines of gender, race, and age. DOLE focuses on ensuring that non-promotable work is not only called out but measured so as to ensure shared and balanced load of NPTs.
Communication Flow Rate: Workplaces that are characterized by “old boys clubs,” workplace cliques, and favoritism significantly impact those who are not part of the “inner circle.” Bringing those on the periphery closer to the center of communication ensures equal access to corporate vision and direction, knowledge flow, and relationship building. The Communication Flow Rate highlights disparities that might otherwise go unnoticed. Through the Communication Flow Rate, companies can map how information and communication flows throughout the organization and ensure that women are equitably positioned as core communication hubs. It also enables leaders to find high potentials and high performers who may be on the periphery in terms of communication so that you can take steps to better loop them in.
You can read more about DOLE, Communication Flow Rate, and other new workplace KPIs here.
I’ll leave you with 3 questions to consider as you think about better management via better metrics:
- What are you measuring today as it relates to your people?
- What insights are sitting within the data that you’re already collecting about what you should do next?
- What are you dreaming of measuring (some of our favorites are psychological safety, employee experience, and trust) that could immediately fuel engagement?
Ready to start measuring differently? Schedule a call to start brainstorming with our Data and Solutions team today.