More than one-third of employees think leaders are ineffective: DDI survey

Bosses lacking empathy, ability to motivate
||Last Updated: 02/15/2012

Employees across the globe think leaders lack empathy with their staff, have poor leadership skills and are ineffective, according to a recent survey by Development Dimensions International (DDI).

One-third (34 per cent) of the 1,200 survey respondents across the globe said they only sometimes or never consider their leader to be effective. Nearly one-half (45 per cent) of respondents think they could be more effective than their manager, but only 46 per cent would actually want to, found the survey. Respondents cited the additional stress, responsibility and pressure as reasons for staying where they were.

More than one-third (37 per cent) said they are only sometimes or never motivated to give their best by their leader. Sixty per cent of respondents said their boss sometimes, most of the time or always damages their self esteem.

The majority of respondents not currently working for the best manager they ever worked for (53 per cent) said they would be 20 per cent to 60 per cent more productive if they were working for their “best ever” boss, and one-quarter (26 per cent) said they would be 41 to 60 per cent more productive. In other words, for every two to three people managed by their best ever leaders, there would be a productivity gain equal to a whole new extra person, said DDI.

“These findings should be of enormous concern to any business,” said Simon Mitchell, director of DDI in the United Kingdom. “They show that leaders are failing in their obligation to employees and, therefore, their organization. The consequences of managers and bosses with poor leadership skills are enormous and the impact good leaders have in terms of employee motivation and productivity are significant."

Comparing the results from people with the best and worst managers (based on respondent perceptions), those reporting they felt motivated to give their best leapt from 11 per cent to 98 per cent, and those reporting that their manager does a good job helping them be more productive went from five per cent to 94 per cent, found the survey.

Other findings include:

•About one-third (35 per cent) of respondents said their boss only listens to their workplace concerns sometimes or never.

•About one-third (34 per cent) of bosses single our certain employees as favourites.

•Only one-half (51 per cent) said their manager asks for their help in solving problems most of the time or always, and 45 per cent said their boss only sometimes or never gives sufficient feedback on their performance.

•Two out of every five (39 per cent) respondents said they have left a job primarily because of their manager or leader, and 55 per cent said they have considered leaving a job because of their leader.

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