I don’t think readers of this blog will find any surprises here:
When it comes to sizing up the quality of their workplaces, federal workers value strong leadership and straight answers from their bosses more than even pay and benefits, according to a new comprehensive study of the federal workforce.
What separates these agencies in the minds of their employees is often the senior leadership, how well or poorly it shares information with subordinates, and the training and opportunities it provides workers, according to the study of federal survey results by the Partnership for Public Service, a nonpartisan group devoted to improving public service.
Despite a general rise in federal workers’ job satisfaction over the past two years, the survey of 212,000 workers last summer found that the government consistently lagged behind the private sector in several important measures of worker contentment — most significantly, superiors’ leadership skills, openness and willingness to help their employees advance their careers.
Fewer than half of federal workers, 48 percent, are satisfied with the information they receive from superiors about what is happening in their organizations, a number that trails the private sector by 18 percentage points. Overall, 66 percent of federal workers think their immediate supervisors are doing a good job, eight points less than in the private sector.
Leadership support and openness are pretty clear ways to get an engaged workforce. I’ll have more to say about this in my upcoming book, Things We Have Known For a Long Time That Clearly Work and Yet Very Seldom Have the Will and Discipline to Apply Them to Our Own Organizations. Or something like that.