Robert Half International and CareerBuilder.com Release Study on How Employees
View Company Leaders
MENLO PARK, Calif., and CHICAGO — On Presidents Day,
Americans honor past U.S. leaders, but what about those who occupy the top spots
in companies across the country? According to a recent study, managers deserve
some recognition, too. More than half (52 percent) of
employees polled said they are satisfied with the performance of their bosses,
while 28 percent are unhappy with their supervisors.
Similarly, 60 percent of workers said they can trust their
managers, compared to 21 percent who believe their supervisors
aren’t trustworthy. Less than one-quarter (24 percent) of
workers feel they could do a better job than their bosses if put in charge.
The survey was developed by Robert Half International, the world’s first and
largest specialized staffing firm, and CareerBuilder.com, the United States’
largest online job site. It was conducted via a web panel and includes
responses from more than 3,000 U.S. workers.
Managers draw the highest marks when it
comes to addressing day-to-day problems, with 58 percent of
employees saying their bosses make time to review their job concerns; only
22 percent disagreed. Workers were somewhat less enthusiastic
about their supervisors’ willingness to help them advance professionally.
Forty-five percent of respondents said their managers help them
develop new skills, compared with 26 percent who disagreed.
“Helping employees acquire new skills and assume greater responsibility is
one of the most effective ways managers can promote loyalty, increase employee
performance and build future leaders,” said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of
Robert Half International and author of Human Resources Kit For Dummies®
(John Wiley & Sons, Inc.), now in its second edition. “Unfortunately, this
type of training takes time, and many managers are too consumed with
trouble-shooting to offer their staff members guidance or professional
Managers More Favored Than Company Executives
While most employees
approve of their supervisors’ performance, workers aren’t quite as complimentary
about top executives. Forty-four percent of workers said they
are satisfied with their corporate leaders’ performance — eight
percentage points lower than those who said the same about their
bosses. Likewise, while six out of 10 workers believe their
bosses can be trusted, approximately four out of 10 said the
same about their corporate leaders. In addition, 36 percent of
employees said those at the top lead by example, and 34 percent
believe their corporate leaders are effective at motivating staff.
“The higher up the ranks an executive goes, the more challenging it becomes
to communicate with staff,” said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human
resources at CareerBuilder.com. “Line managers have the benefit of being able
to build rapport through daily interactions, whereas corporate executives
typically must rely on more formal communication channels, which may not always
be as effective.”
The methodology used to collect survey responses
from more than 3,000 workers involved selecting a random sample of comScore
Networks panel members. These web panel members were approached via an e-mail
invitation, which asked them to participate in a short online survey. The
results of this survey are statistically accurate to within +/- 1.78 percentage
points (19 times out of 20).