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Harry Hertz

Management

Avoid Startling Statistics

Do you have the data for your organization?

Published: Monday, May 13, 2019 - 12:02

Recently I’ve seen some startling statistics from Gallup and Glassdoor about employee and customer engagement. I hope those statistics do not represent data from any organization you or I associate with. The actions of senior leaders, as well as setting the right focus on employees, can prevent your organization from becoming a “startling statistic.”

Moreover, the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence ask the questions that can guide your organization in the right direction.

I have six data points to share that support my grave concern:
1. Only 22 percent of employees strongly agree their leaders set a clear vision for their organization.
2. Only 26 percent of employees believe their organization always delivers on customer commitments.
3. Only 14 percent of employees strongly agree that the performance reviews they receive inspire them to improve.
4. 67 percent of employees say they are burned out at work.
5. 81 percent of employees would work harder if their bosses expressed more gratitude.
6. 51 percent of currently employed adults in the United States say they are searching for new jobs or watching for new job opportunities.

Only 22 percent of employees strongly agree their leaders set a clear vision for their organization

I believe there are two aspects to this issue. The first is about senior leaders setting a compelling vision for the organization. The second issue relates to communicating that vision and engaging employees in achieving it. The Senior Leadership item in the Baldrige Criteria asks how senior leaders set and deploy the organization’s vision. It further asks how they create an environment for success, now and in the future.

Only 26 percent of employees believe their organization always delivers on customer commitments

I believe there are multiple aspects to this issue:
• Customer expectations and “delighters” have never been ascertained because of lack of communication with customers.
• Expectations are known by leaders but not communicated to employees.
• Senior leaders do not emphasize a focus on customer engagement.
• Expectations and “delighters” are known, but complaints are unaddressed, not analyzed for patterns (to mitigate future complaints); also, employees are not empowered to solve customer complaints or requests.
• Expectations are met, but competitors deliver a greater level of satisfaction and engagement.

The Organizational Profile of the Baldrige Criteria asks for your key customer requirements and expectations, and how they differ for different customer groups. The Senior Leadership item in the Baldrige Criteria asks how senior leaders set a focus on customer engagement and creating customer value.

The Customers category of the Baldrige Criteria has a whole item that addresses listening to customers to determine their needs, and another item that addresses building relationships with customers and determining their satisfaction and engagement, including managing any complaints.

The Workforce Environment item asks how you organize and manage your workforce to reinforce a customer focus. The Workforce Engagement item asks how your workforce performance management system supports a customer focus.

Only 14 percent of employees strongly agree that the performance reviews they receive inspire them to improve

Many employees don’t believe their performance reviews are fair. They believe that there is favoritism in review systems. Also, frequently mandated review criteria do not match the key attributes of an employee’s job performance. The Baldrige Criteria include an item that addresses workforce engagement and includes how your performance management system supports high performance, how you support personal development of employees, and how you manage career progression for your employees.

67 percent of employees say they are burned out at work

Employee burnout can affect organizational performance, organizational culture, and customer engagement. The Organizational Profile asks about drivers of employee engagement for your employees. The Workforce Engagement item asks how those drivers differ for workforce groups and segments, and how you foster an organizational culture that is characterized by an engaged workforce.

81 percent of employees would work harder if their bosses expressed more gratitude

How often do your bosses say “thank you” to employees? The Senior Leadership item asks how senior leaders communicate with the entire workforce and foster frank, two-way communication. It also asks how they take a direct role in motivating the workforce toward high performance.

51 percent of currently employed adults in the United States say they are searching for new jobs or watching for new job opportunities

The Workforce category of the Baldrige Criteria is all about setting the proper environment to support the workforce, engage and develop workforce members, and thereby build loyalty and commitment to the organization.

Do you have the data for your organization?

Are you part of these startling statistics? Have you asked yourself some of the questions posed by the Baldrige Criteria? Consider using the Baldrige Excellence Framework or starting with the Baldrige Excellence Builder to make sure you are a high-performing organization and not a startling statistic.

Learn from role-model organizations

If you want to see how high-performing organizations engage employees and achieve financial and customer success, consider learning from organizations that have achieved role-model status through the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. They will be presenting their strategies at the 2019 Baldrige Fall Conference in Nashville, Tennessee, Oct. 24–25, 2019.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Discuss

About The Author

Harry Hertz’s picture

Harry Hertz

 Harry Hertz retired in June 2013 from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) where he served as director of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program since 1995. For more than 15 years he was the primary architect of the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence, responsible for expansion of the Baldrige Program and Award to healthcare, education, and nonprofits, including government. Hertz serves on the Advisory Group for VHA’s Center for Applied Healthcare Studies and on the adjunct faculty of American University. He has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn and a Ph.D. from M.I.T.