New research from consulting firm BlessingWhite shows that employees trust their immediate supervisors more than their upper-level counterparts. According to the report, 74 percent of staff members trust their supervisors compared with the 57 percent who trust their senior leaders. The primary reason uncovered by researchers for the disparity is a lack of communication between senior management and ground-floor employees. This leads to employees drawing more negative conclusions about their senior staff compared to their front-line bosses.
Even though nearly three-quarters of employees have faith in their supervisor, many employees still feel that their problems are ignored. According to a new survey by management consulting firm Healthy Companies International, over 35 percent of employee respondents said that their immediate bosses were closed off about their personal strengths and weaknesses. Some researchers suggest that this lack of openness comes from a growing sense of disconnectedness that develops when someone reaches a position of authority. Once an employee becomes a supervisor, he or she may become self-important and lose interest in hearing ideas from subordinates.
Commenting on the need for managers to be capable of stepping back and analyzing their own inadequacies, Stephen Parker, president of Health Companies International said, “Only by doing so may leaders learn to make the most of their own assets and to rely astutely on others. There can be great power in sharing one’s humanity and in being open about oneself.”
BlessingWhite’s research comes from its North American Employee Engagement Update 2012. The data is based on survey responses of more than 3,500 employed professionals – 2,616 of the participants live in North America. The Employee Engagement Update will be released in October.