Many Workers Still in the Dark About Company Goals

September 9, 2002 ( -Corporate recovery may be tough for some companies because many workers aren't clear on how they personally contribute to their employer's overall goals, according to a survey.

Watson Wyatt’s WorkUSA 2002 survey found that the 49% of surveyed employees who understood their personal link to their company’s goals represented a dramatic 20% drop since a 2000 survey.

That’s not an inconsequential statistic, according to the consulting company. The study found that three-year total returns to shareholders (TRS) are three times higher at companies where employees comprehend how they help meet corporate objectives.

The Watson Wyatt study also found that only 35% of employees understand how the quality of their work is tied to the size of their paycheck. Four out of 10 workers claim top performers go unrewarded.

Other survey findings included:

  • Less than half of workers surveyed – 45% – have confidence in the job being done by senior management, a drop from 50% in 2000.  Only 39% of workers say they trust the senior leaders at their firms.
  • The percentage of workers who say their companies do a good job telling them how their pay is determined declined from 56% in 2000 to 43% this year, the lowest level since 1994. However, 68% say company officials do a much better job communicating benefits information.
  • Stock option programs appear to be losing some worker support with a 7% decline to 50% in those ranking the programs favorably. Likewise, those satisfied with their current profit sharing arrangement dropped 10 points between 2000 and 2002 to 45%.

WorkUSA survey includes responses from 12,750 workers at all job levels and in all major industries.