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Why Most Employees Aren’t Dedicated

2 out of 3 new employees will become less dedicated to their jobs over time.

Declining employee dedication is the rule, rather than the exception. Even if a new hire starts out very committed to their job, they will probably become less committed as time passes. This is a somewhat disturbing statistic for employers.

But then again, 1 out of 3 new employees becomes more dedicated over time. Do these more dedicated employees have different experiences at work? Do they have different personal characteristics? Recent research suggests 5 things that really matter and one thing that surprisingly doesn’t.

1. Age

The employees who became more dedicated over time tend to be older.

2. Relevant training

Training sometimes led to increased employee dedication. The biggest difference was made by how relevant the training was to actual job tasks.

3. Challenging work

Employees who became more dedicated reported that their work was more challenging than others.

4. (Un)Manageable workload

Employees who became less dedicated were much more likely to report feeling overwhelmed and overworked.

5. (Not) Being promoted

Employees who became less dedicated were also much less likely to be promoted over time.

Do employees become less dedicated because they don’t have opportunities for advancement? Are they not promoted because they become less dedicated? Both seem entirely possible.

…And 1 surprising result

Some people feel like their job is a really important part of who they are. Some people don’t really feel that way. But when it comes to employee dedication, it doesn’t seem to matter. Regardless of how important the job was to a given employee, dedication was still much more likely to decrease over time.

Why? The most likely explanation is that, to at least some extent, employees tend to burn out over time.

If so, the solutions may be relatively simple. Employers can help prevent burnout and reverse these trends by using more effective management styles.

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