Workers don’t trust senior team

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One would hope that company leaders and senior managers would inspire and impress employees but, unfortunately, it seems that isn’t the case. According to new research,  less than half of workers (44%) said  their leadership teams can improve business performance, and only a few more (51%) trusted the information they get from senior figures in their organization.

The research, from Towers Watson’s Global Workforce Study, also found that workers felt pressured to work harder and for longer in order to drive growth and fulfill company expectations. Just 45% felt that their leaders were managing costs well, and only half rated their senior managers’ performance at growing the business as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.

 It also highlighted a widening disconnect between top leaders and their workforce, resulting in a “climate of discontent”, Arvinder Dhesi from Towers Watson said.
“It was essential that leaders communicated business strategy and employee expectations clearly, particularly in recessionary times”. It  could be easy for senior managers to lose touch with their staff when pressured by targets and budgets, but the long-term damage this  could do to the company could prove to be much bigger and more expensive, Dhesi explained. “It is particularly worrying to see how many workers are losing faith in the system of communication, which could make it difficult to attract and retain key talent in the future. It is vital that businesses take note of this growing trend and act to tackle it right now to avoid an era of ‘lost leaders’.”.

Another recent survey, conducted by Healthy Companies International, showed that more than one-third (37%) of employees said their leaders were not open or honest about personal strengths and weaknesses.

It’s surely a truism, but one of the most common failings of senior people is their seeming blindness to their own shortcomings, Stephen Parker from Healthy Companies International said.. “The blindness may be due to a lack of self-awareness, or a masquerade to hide insecurity, or even a misunderstanding of what effective leadership is all about. Whatever the basis, a boss’s lack of introspection hurts job performance as well as the organization’s ability to function well.”

If a boss pretends to be good at everything, it sent  the message that other people aren’t needed, and the boss loses his credibility,  he said. “The ability to recognize limitations along with abilities and qualities is at the core of sound leadership development and great leaders accepted criticism and maximize personal strengths.”

They also manage their weaknesses by building out their teams with people who are good at what they aren’t,” Parker said. “That’s why successful leadership development programs empower high-potential candidates so they know their blind spots and at the same time acknowledge their core skills.”


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