New Delhi, Feb 16 (IANS) Pay and benefits are no longer the only critical factors in deciding where to work, with a striking majority citing their employers’ values (80 per cent) and commitment to the environment (76 per cent) and social equality (75 per cent) as key criteria, reveals a survey commissioned by Paul Polman.
The Net Positive Barometer, a survey of 2,000 British employees, on Thursday said 41 per cent are concerned about paying their bills, while 69 per cent are anxious about the future of the planet and society, and 64 per cent of employees say that the acceleration of global crises raises the bar of expectations for businesses.
Two thirds (66 per cent) of UK employees want to work for companies trying to have a positive impact on the world, but 68 per cent say that current efforts by business to tackle environmental and societal challenges do not go far enough.
Forty-five per cent of workers would consider resigning from their job if the values of the company did not align with their own. Indeed 35 per cent report having resigned from another position for this reason, while the same proportion would consider taking a pay cut to work for a company that shares their values.
The Barometer illustrates the link between companies’ social and environmental actions and employees’ job satisfaction. For instance, those who say their company has goals or targets on the environment are more likely to say they are motivated at work than those who do not think their company has goals or targets (73 per cent vs. 50 per cent in the UK).
This is especially the case for Gen Z workers, who already makeup 9.5 per cent of the UK population. Two thirds (66 per cent) would be less motivated if their company’s values did not align with their own.
Paul Polman, responsible business advocate and co-author of “Net Positive”, stated: “The Net Positive Barometer is a wakeup call. Times have changed and employees no longer want outdated corporate social responsibility initiatives and a lack of action. Unsatisfied and unmotivated employees recognise the power is in the hands of the CEOs.
“They want to work for companies which work to tackle the world’s greatest challenges, and they want to play their part. Or they’ll leave.”
Jean-Pascal Tricoire, CEO and Chairman of Schneider Electric, said: “Attracting and retaining talent is essential for a performing company. In times of global crises, employees expect their employers to step up, speak out, take action on key environmental and societal issues. At Schneider Electric we work to align profit and purpose.”
Sharan Burrow, Former General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, added: “Companies must be courageous and transform their businesses together with their employees, rather than making more empty promises behind closed doors. Gen Z wants to join them on this journey and to be a part of the solution to tackle climate change, ensure rights are respected through their supply change and that inequality is effectively addressed.
“CEOs must embrace this partnership and they’ll be rewarded with a more satisfied and motivated workforce.”
Overall, the Net Positive Barometer unveils three clear ways companies can close the gap between their actions and their employees’ expectations: greater ambition, better communication, and empowerment.
Those CEOs that fail to act risk losing talent, weakening engagement and productivity, and undermining the success of their business in the years ahead. Those who step up will reap the rewards of motivated, innovative, and loyal employees who work together with senior leadership to accelerate the company’s journey toward becoming a more responsible, more sustainable, and ultimately more profitable business.