U.S. employees give senior leadership low marks, Willis Towers Watson research reveals

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ARLINGTON, VA, June 22, 2017 — U.S. employees give their senior leadership low marks on key aspects of people management, including the ability to develop future leaders, evoke trust and confidence, and demonstrate sincere interest in employees’ well-being, according to research from Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ: WLTW), a leading global advisory, broking and solutions company. Employees, however, give their immediate managers higher grades, although research shows significant room for improvement.

The Willis Towers Watson Global Workforce Study found that less than half (45%) of U.S. employees have trust and confidence in the job being done by their organization’s top leaders. That’s down from 55% who responded similarly in 2014. Just under half (47%) believe leaders have a sincere interest in employee well-being, while barely four in 10 (41%) think their organization is doing a good job of developing future leaders.

“With today’s dynamic business environment and the changing nature of the new world of work, the need for strong, effective corporate leaders is at an all-time high,” said Laura Sejen, managing director, Human Capital and Benefits, Willis Towers Watson. “The fact that a significant percentage of workers don’t believe their leaders are as effective as they can be is worrisome, given that strong leadership is a key driver of employee engagement.”

Employees view immediate managers more favorably. More than eight in 10 (81%) say their managers treat them with respect, while 75% say managers assign them tasks that are suited to their skills and abilities. A solid majority (60%) believe their managers communicate goals and assignments clearly.

The research, however, shows that immediate managers have much room for improvement. Barely half of employees…

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