Senior managers admit to slacking off in the workplace...

Business Insights

with research revealing that they're more likely to get away with it

Ever had a manager who appears to do the bare minimum? Or maybe you’ve been that manager yourself? Well, according to the latest study from the UK’s leading independent job board, CV-Library, four in 10 (45.5%) senior employees admit to slacking off in the workplace.

The study, which surveyed 2,000 UK professionals, also found that two-thirds (66.7%) of senior employees still manage to deliver results despite slacking off. This is supported by 95.6% claiming that nobody has ever commented on their laziness in the workplace.

The top reasons for senior employees slacking off include having a lack of motivation (57.7%), not feeling challenged (35.6%), feeling as if they’ve already achieved as much as they can (31.7%) and simply being bored (29.8%).

Lee Biggins, founder and CEO of CV-Library comments:

“There’s a big difference between straight-up laziness and employees who aren’t reaching their full potential. It’s shocking to see that so many professionals are able to do their job whilst putting in minimal effort - reaching the top is no excuse for taking your foot off the pedal.

“For your own job satisfaction and to set a good example for others, senior employees especially should always be striving for more. Indeed, disengagement appears to be the main issue that needs addressing in the workplace. If you notice an employee that seems switched off, a sideways move internally or increased training and development opportunities could make all the difference to their attitude.”

What’s more, 64.8% of senior employees believe they’re more likely to get away with being lazy at work than more junior members of staff. In fact, when asked how they get away with doing minimal work, senior respondents cited the following: not bothering with brown-nosing (36.7%), being out of the office a lot for their job (30.6%) and chatting to people in communal areas (23.5%).

Biggins concludes:

“It’s a well-known fact that when you’re starting out in your career, there’s marginal room for error and even less room for laziness, whereas senior employees have somewhat earned a little leeway. It’s also interesting to see that they recommended not trying too hard to please others to decrease your workload. There’s something to be said for having a straight-up attitude in the workplace, that’s for sure.”

If you’re struggling to motivate lazy members of staff, then you may want to check out these top tips:

Offer fair pay

It’s a fact. Salary is one of the best ways to motivate your employees to work hard and achieve their goals. If you don’t benchmark your salaries against industry averages, you’re more than likely to face lazy and inefficient employees. Or, lose them altogether.

Schedule in annual pay reviews with employees to ensure you’re paying them in line with their performance. At the very least, salaries should rise in line with inflation. If you’re unsure of what constitutes fair pay, use online salary calculators to check for each role.

Conduct regular one-to-ones

One sure-fire way to make staff feel valued is to sit them down and have a one-on-one discussion. And not just in their annual review! Schedule in a meeting every so often to discuss their career goals and aspirations. Be sure your employee leaves with a plan of action in place.

What’s more, what comes across as laziness could indicate underlying personal issues that an employee is struggling with. You have a duty of care towards your members of staff, so it’s a good idea to check in on general wellbeing in these meetings.

Communicate your goals

Communication is key to a successful business. After all, your employees won’t feel motivated if they don’t understand the role they play in your business’ vision. Make inclusivity a priority if you want to see increased creativity and innovation in the workplace.

Of course, communication methods depend on the needs of your business. You might have to experiment with several methods before deciding what works best. Annual or quarterly presentations delivered by heads of department, for example, are an effective way to bridge the gap between the senior management team and other employees.

Alternatively, an employee magazine or newsletter will also get everyone up to speed with key company updates. It’s even better if you can get employees actively involved in its production. Whichever option you choose, stick with it to watch motivation skyrocket!