Are you one of the senior employees who’s slacking off at work?
A new study suggests that almost 1/2 (45.5%) of senior professionals fall into this category. Please note: the study’s use of ‘senior’ refers to seniority of position, as opposed to age group.
In addition, the Cambridge Dictionary defines ‘slack off’ as a phrasal verb, meaning to ‘stop working hard or putting effort into something’.
Senior professionals say that…
- Despite, their reduced work efforts, they continue to provide ‘results’ (66.7%)
- They’re primarily suffering from poor motivation (57.7%)
- They’re not appropriately ‘challenged’ by their work (35.6%)
- They’ve already reached their achievement potential (31.7%)
- And they feel ‘bored’ (29.8%)
Furthermore, 95.6% of these senior professionals have never been spoken to about their behaviour at work and believe they can get away with more than their junior counterparts.
This is concerning news at every business level:
- Business leaders are naturally looking for employees that they can trust to work effectively and who will push themselves to achieve business goals. Especially when these employees may be managing other team members and/or responsible for high-value tasks.
- Colleagues can suffer the effects of slackened work efforts. For instance, suddenly having to take on extra workloads or reach unexpected last-minute deadlines, etc. Resentments may also build if colleagues observe their senior team members getting away with things that they wouldn’t.
- Let’s not forget the senior professionals themselves. It is concerning for any employee to routinely feel unmotivated, a lack of challenge, loss of achievement opportunities and/or boredom.
What to do if you’re managing such a colleague…
Inc. has some realistic advice on managing those that are slacking off without become a micromanager. Or, as they say, ‘without running the office like a drill sargeant!’
It’s well worth getting to the root of why their efforts have lessened and how you can work together to reignite their motivation, create new challenges and/or increase their interest level. There may, of course, be other issues that the individual is experiencing outside of the above research findings.
There are so many possible solutions, from training opportunities to new projects and even a change of job role – which may help you to see more of your employee’s potential and achieve more as a result.
What to do if you’re the professional that’s slacking off at work!
As a senior employee, it’s also important that you can hold yourself accountable and review what’s going wrong.
Do you identify with any of the statements listed at the top of this post? Is there something else that’s bothering you, such as feeling too distracted, personal issues, burnout or similar?
Once you’ve identified what’s going wrong, set yourself some challenges to see how you can improve things. Take inspiration from all the many business experts out there. For instance:
- In times of poor motivation: try one of the Muse’s 7 tips.
- When you’re not feeling challenged by your work: the Muse also has 9 links to visit dependent on how you need to challenge yourself.
- If you feel you’ve reached your achievement potential: see the above once again, as a fresh challenge can create new achievement opportunities. If you’re still not feeling inspired, consider whether you’ve outgrown your job.
- When you feel bored: read this Fast Company feature to explore the difference between boredom and unhappiness.
Many of the above posts also discuss one essential topic: working out when it’s time to move on. If you’ve outgrown your role and you’re eager to apply yourself to a new challenge, please visit our jobs page.