UK CEOs need to engage more with employees

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According to Unit4’s new Decision-Making for the Future of Business report, more than a third (36 per cent) of UK employees have never had any contact with their CEO, and 14 per cent feel that their CEO is unapproachable, compared to just 9 per cent globally.

The research suggests a lack of face-to-face communication in UK businesses, and ranks UK CEOs as the most elusive of all the nations surveyed as part of the study.

In fact, 31 per cent of those surveyed in the UK reported only receiving company-wide emails from their CEO, while 38 per cent said that would feel uncomfortable approaching senior management to complain about something in the organisation.

Results from UK respondents also revealed that 10 per cent employees think their CEOs are untrustworthy, compared to a global average of 8 per cent, while 15 per cent think their CEOs are motivated by money and not much else. This compares to a global average of 11 per cent.

Commenting on the findings of the report, Mike Ettling, CEO of Unit4, described a business leader who has not once engaged with their employees as a ‘chief elusive officer’. He said: “When CEOs are seen to be sat in an ivory tower, employees will inevitably be left feeling disengaged with their organisation’s leadership. This can have a significant impact on productivity at work, business profitability and overall motivation.

“The traditional top-down business model must be left where it belongs – in the past”, he added.

Unit4’s research interviewed people at organisations of 10 to 999 employees in Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the US. A full copy of the report can be found here.