What Do Your Employees Want?


As a manager, do you know how to keep your employees happy? Most employers think what employees really want is money and job security. In reality, what usually tops the list for employees is appreciation and independence. The best way to be sure you are giving employees what they want is to simply ask!

Employee Satisfaction Surveys – Find Their Motivation

According to research done at the University of Chicago, there are four types of employees:

  • Survivalists: Those who need the income to survive.
  • Seekers: Those seeking a combination of good pay and personal satisfaction.
  • Contributors: Those who feel a need to make a difference and are not motivated by money.
  • “Fun”damentalists: Those who need to enjoy what they do, have fun at work and enjoy the social scene.

What types of employees do you have? The best way to find out is with an anonymous employee satisfaction survey. This is an efficient way to ask everyone in the company about their experiences and engagement. The anonymity allows employees to feel free to express themselves without penalty.

Reviewing the survey answers allows upper management to get an overall picture of what will be best for the company. You can also view individual answers for a better idea of what your direct reports need from you.

What to Include in the Questionnaire

Surveys are only as good as the questions they ask. So what kind of questions should your employee survey cover? If your goal is to understand what your employees want, you should cover a wide range of topics, such as:

  • Quality of Leadership
  • Communications
  • Development/Job Opportunities
  • Company Culture
  • Pay and Benefits

Typical questionnaires will give a statement and ask for a number from 1-5 indicating the employee’s level of agreement. For example:

I feel that my ideas are taken seriously by management.

1 – Strongly Disagree 2 – Somewhat Disagree 3 – Neutral 4 – Somewhat Agree 5 – Strongly Agree

You may also choose to include a space for staff to write in their own comments. Although this will make the review process more complicated, it can be worthwhile to get staff’s real thoughts and opinions, in their own words.

Keep Communication Open

Whether you put together a formal survey, or simply ask individual employees, keep communication open with your staff. Letting them express what they want is the only surefire way of learning how to keep them happy.

As one of Oregon’s Top Staffing Firms, let Staffing Partners help you get – and keep – the best employees in the area. Request an employee today!

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