Bleak or Promising? Gallup’s 2022 State of the Global Workplace Findings

“Do employees find their work meaningful and rewarding? Do they think their lives are going well? Do they feel hopeful about the future? The short answer is that most employees around the world would answer “no” to all three questions.” [Gallup’s 2022 State of the Global Workplace Report].

Whether this is bleak news or promising news depends on that one key word, “MOST.” From the positive-deviant perspective, that not all of the people have this experience means that some ARE engaged, and feel that their work is meaningful and rewarding. They feel their lives are going well, and they are hopeful about the future. This aligns with my current research where we have found thousands of groups living this way, every day, all over the world.

While this is not good news for the 79% of the workers not engaged at work, we now have a way of (1) finding people who are engaged at work, and (2) we can begin to learn with them about what drives their engagement. These engaged people work in the same geographies, in the same industries, and often in the same large companies as the disengaged people. We can study what makes them different, within the same or very similar circumstances. Our research suggests a key difference is in how they agree, consciously and unconsciously, to interact, which we can measure with the field of their agreements.

I see this as inspiring news. We have found a way to identify people who are figuring out how to live the way more of us want to live, in the same circumstances we live in, and we have found a way to learn with them. Two weeks ago I shared recent studies highlighting some of these initial findings.

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