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NextGen Magazine


Survey: C-Suite Must Support Employees’ Well-Being

S.J. Steinhardt
Published Date:
Jun 23, 2023

Leaders need to do more to pay attention to—and address—their employees’ well-being, a survey by Deloitte and consulting firm Workplace Intelligence found.

The 2023 Well-Being at Work survey of 3,150 C-suite executives, managers and employees in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia yielded some distinct disconnects in perception between leaders  and employees. One is that, while most employees said that their health worsened or stayed the same last year, more than three in four executives believed that their workforces’ health improved. Around half of workers said they “always” or “often” felt exhausted or stressed, while significant percentages reported feeling overwhelmed (43 percent), irritable (34 percent), lonely (33 percent), depressed (32 percent), and angry (27 percent).

An additional disconnect concerns how these issues are being addressed: About 84 percent of the C-suite respondents said their companies have made public well-being commitments, but only 39 percent of employees agreed.

An emerging topic is human sustainability, “the creation of value for current and future workers and, more broadly, human beings and society,” as the survey put it. Again, there are differing perspectives: While a majority of the executives surveyed (89 percent) said their company is advancing human sustainability in some capacity, only 41 percent of employees agreed.

In addition, 91 percent of the C-suite respondents thought that their employees believed they cared about their well-being, but only 56 percent of the employees surveyed thought that their companies’ executives cared.

Seventy-four percent of employees say that improving their well-being is more important than advancing their careers.

The survey did reveal a positive finding: Seventy-eight percent of the C-suite respondents said that leadership should change if their company can’t maintain an acceptable level of workforce well-being.

If companies don’t take action to support the well-being of workers and leaders, they will inevitably struggle to find and keep good people, Workplace Intelligence Managing Partner Dan Schawbel told Fast Company. But he sees change on the horizon, mostly because top leaders are suffering just like the rest of their employees.

“Organizations may be at a turning point right now,” he said. “Because it’s affecting everyone, especially the people in power; they’re more likely to do something about it.”