Britain – As the country prepares to head to the polls at the end of the year, leadership has never been under more scrutiny.

Now a report released by leading employee experience consultant People Insight shows a decline in senior leaders providing clear vision as well as a drop in confidence among employees asked whether they feel listened to or informed about their company’s objectives.

It also showed that despite record salaries the level of satisfaction with pay has dropped from 52% in 2021 to 44% in 2023 and employees who feel gratitude for a job well done has sunk from 65% to 61%.

People Insight has surveyed thousands of workforces across the UK, working with firms such as Greggs, Vinted, Cote Brasserie and Virgin Active.

Head of Consultancy Kate Pritchard said the clock was ticking for leaders to re-connect with their workforce.

“Leaders and managers did a brilliant job when the world effectively shut down: they were more human, more connected, more in touch, because that was implicit in the new way we were all working. Although they still care, now that the nation is back to normal there’s an acceptance that everything is returning to how it was before.”

However, employees have noticed the change and it’s reflected in their engagement scores.

“On the whole, it’s fair to say that employees expectations have risen since the pandemic,” Kate explained. “They feel they should have a say; a belief that their voice counts and that action will happen as a result.

“The last two years have shown us that it’s possible for leaders to have deep-rooted connections with their employees. Now they need to find that again.”

Managing Director Tom Debenham said there are many ingredients to organisational success, but leadership has always been core.

“Effective leaders inspire, innovate, and steer their companies through challenges, making leadership vital for thriving in today’s dynamic and flexible work environment. But more, it’s about how leadership has evolved and the dangers of taking a backward step. It’s about how perceptions of what a leader is have changed and how business needs to react and adapt.

‘Things that we did well during the pandemic – connected leadership, effective communication, psychological safety, and fair treatment –
need to be revisited to once again become integral pillars shaping the employee experience.”

To read People Insight’s Trends Report in full click here –

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