Less Than Half of Workers are Committed to Their Organization's Goals

FranklinCovey, which has surveyed more than 2.5 million people about productivity and effectiveness issues, last week released the findings of its latest Execution Quotient study of 12,182 U.S. workers.

The findings confirm that most organizations suffer from major "execution gaps," which undermine the achievement of their most critical, strategic goals. The Execution gaps result from a combination of factors and the degree to which workers understand and apply six, key principles of execution at the individual, team and organizational level- clarity, commitment, translation into action, enabling, synergy, and accountability.

Clarity: The majority of workers don't know their organization's most important goals:

  • Only 48% of workers say their organization has a clear strategic direction and only 37% say they understand the reason for that strategic direction
  • Only 44% of workers say their organization has clearly communicated its most important goals
  • Only 54% of workers say they clearly understand what they are supposed to do to help achieve their organization's goals

Additionally, in a separate study only 15% of workers could actually identify their organization's top three goals.

Commitment: The majority of workers are not committed to their organization's most important goals

  • Only 22% of workers are enthusiastic about the goals they set with their work teams
  • Only 39% of workers say they are highly energized and committed to the direction of their work team
  • Only 41% of workers say their job taps into the best of their talents and passion.

Translation Into Action: The majority of workers do not translate organizational goals into action:

  • Only 48% of workers say the goals of their work team are translated into their individual work goals
  • Only 32% of workers say they take time each week to identify and schedule the activities around their work team's most important goals
  • Only 38% of workers say their work team planning results in clear assignments for individuals

Enabling: The majority of workers think there are significant barriers to execution of organizational goals:

  • Only 38% of workers say that their work team systems and processes are aligned to help the team achieve its goals
  • Only 15% of workers say their upper management actively supports the goals of their work team
  • When asked the most significant barriers that make it difficult for them to achieve their most important work goals, the most frequently mentioned responses over 25% of the time were:

Overwhelming workload (e.g., too much to do, can't get to all my key priorities) (31%)

Lack of resources (e.g., insufficient budgets, people, tools, support) (30%)

Unclear or shifting work priorities (e.g., other people's urgencies and emergencies, conflicting demands, surprise projects) (27%)

Political issues (e.g., turf battles, rivalries, favoritism, personality clashes) (26%)

Lack of recognition or reward (e.g., credit not shared, unfair pay, rewards not tied to performance) (26%)

Synergy: The majority of workers don't work well together to achieve their organization's goals:

  • Only 31% of workers say their team regularly achieves better results because of how well they work together with other work teams
  • Only 28% of workers say that work teams within their organization actively help each other to achieve their respective goals
  • Only 37% of workers say they do not undermine each other on their work team

Accountability: The majority of workers don't hold each other accountable for achieving their organization's goals:

  • Only 41% of workers say their work team reports to each other on their progress toward goals
  • Only 26% of workers say they meet at least monthly with their manager to review progress on their goals
  • Only 30% of workers say work team rewards and consequences are clearly based on performance

Dr. Stephen R. Covey, vice chairman of FranklinCovey and author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People said, "The most fundamental business issue facing organizations today is execution -- whether or not an organization achieves its goals. There is serious misalignment between the daily activities of the front line worker and the organizational strategy. The top priority of every executive and team leader should be to clarify, communicate and assist workers in achieving their organization's critical goals."

You may review the complete report of the FranklinCovey xQ survey.

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