U.K. and Western Europe Have Least Engaged Employees Globally, Though Stress Levels Decreased During Pandemic
Low employee engagement is estimated to cost the global economy $8.1 trillion yearly
WASHINGTON, June 9, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Gallup’s latest State of the Global Workplace report finds that the U.K. and Western Europe have the lowest employee engagement levels globally at just 11%, but the region’s employees assessed themselves as having high life evaluations (55% are thriving) and low negative emotions compared with employees in many other world regions. In fact, Western European employees saw a decline in stress and anger, no change in sadness and an increase of only three points for worry.
Globally, employee engagement decreased by two percentage points from 2019 to 2020, and Gallup estimates that low employee engagement costs the global economy $8.1 trillion. In contrast to Western Europe, Eastern Europe’s levels of employee engagement rose seven percentage points from 2019 to 2020, the largest regional increase in the world.
Across Western Europe, working women (13%) were more engaged than working men (10%), while they also reported lower daily stress in 2020 (41%) than in 2019 (47%), possibly due to supportive social safety nets in many European countries, such as well-developed social systems that helped to prevent some job loss and unemployment.
The global workforce reported higher worry, stress, anger and sadness in 2020 than in the previous year. The largest increases in daily worry globally occurred in Eastern Europe (+12 points), while the percentage of younger employees in Eastern Europe experiencing daily anger doubled from 2019 to 2020.
“Even before the pandemic, the new workforce was asking for a workplace that would improve their overall life and support their wellbeing. Organizations are in a unique position to improve lives and performance simultaneously,” said Pa Sinyan, Gallup’s Managing Partner for Europe.
France and the U.K. employees reported not feeling respected at work (10% and 9%, respectively). However, this is still lower than most Eastern European countries with 32% of employees in Lithuania not feeling respected at work.
In the U.K., 60% of workers consider themselves thriving, higher than Germany (59%), France (42%), Spain (42%) and Italy (41%) — although this was lower than the Nordic countries, which have the highest wellbeing levels at 74%. Overall, Europe reported stronger than the world-average thriving levels.
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