Survey: Global, Demographic Differences Drive Employee Loyalty

By Deborah Austin One-size-fits-all assumptions may cripple employee-retention strategies, suggests an international employee-loyalty study by Milwaukee-based staffing firm Manpower Inc., which polled companies in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, the UK and U.S. Key findings include:

  • Loyalty levels are lowest not among newcomers, but among workers with three- to five-year tenures. After that, loyalty soars.
  • In the U.S., "strong company leadership" is top loyalty driver. But in France, Germany, Italy and the UK, it's "giving employees recognition"; in Mexico and the Netherlands, "open and honest communication"; and in Japan, "job interest and variety."
  • Low loyalty is more likely to drive employee turnover in small companies (150 or fewer employees) than in larger firms. Four loyalty-related employee profiles were identified:
    • Mutual loyalists (48% of employees) -- loyal to employer and believe the loyalty is deserved.
    • Blind loyalists (14%) -- express loyalty despite not feeling it's deserved.
    • Mercenaries (17%) -- believe company deserves their loyalty, but sense none toward it.
    • Saboteurs (21%) -- believe company does not deserve their loyalty, and feel none.
    The study consisted of more than 2,600 telephone surveys of human-resource managers in eight countries and over 1,400 interviews with employees in the U.S. and UK.
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