Which Country's Workers Care About Their Jobs the Most?

A new survey covering 13 countries tries to measure employees' engagement with their jobs.

According to one survey, the average amount of time that some employees spend on personal activities at work is somewhere between 1.5 and three hours a day. With that in mind, it’s no wonder that employers are more concerned than ever about productivity statistics. Nowadays, with technology that allow employers quantify output more closely, it’s no longer the status quo just to show up to work. Managers want employees who are engaged.

In a new global survey, the U.S. and China are tied for having the most-engaged employees—engagement being measured by how much employees believed in their work’s purpose and in their own company’s future.

The survey was conducted earlier this year in 13 countries, covering 1,000 workers, from various companies, in each country. It asked them to rank eight statements, such as “At work, I clearly understand what is expected of me,” and“I know I will be recognized for excellent work.” After controlling for the fact that survey questions carry different connotations in different languages, the researchers arrived at their conclusion.

Percentage of Workers Considered “Engaged,” by Country

The Marcus Buckingham Company

The company that conducted the survey, the Marcus Buckingham Company, says that the element that explained the difference in engagement across countries was whether an employee thought their personal strengths could be used at work. That said, certain patterns were visible on the level of individual countries. In the U.S., the survey found that a key indicator of engagement was whether employees were onboard with the mission of the company. In the U.K. and India, it was about whether employees valued being around coworkers who shared their values. In France, Canada, Brazil, and Argentina, workers responded most strongly to the statement “My teammates have my back.”

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