Employee Engagement or Job Dissatisfaction

Leaders Know Employee Engagement is Vital for Sustained Success

However…Job dissatisfaction affects many employees…

… in varying degrees at different times.  workplace issues like stress or conflict…How we mindfully choose to respond is more important than denying or suffering.

A simple model to use as an insight or increased understanding and awareness tool for where staff may find themselves at different times or with different circumstances..

Most staff react to workplace issues with job dissatisfaction or similar energies in 1 of 4 possibilities:





















Exit Reaction:

refers to leaving the organisation, transferring to another work unit, or at least trying to exit the dissatisfying or unacceptable situation.

Exit usually follows specific “shock events,” such as when your boss treats you unfairly. These shock events generate strong emotions that energize employees to think about and search for an alternative employment.

Voice & Vocal

refers to any attempt to change and highlight, rather than escape from, the dissatisfying situation. Voice can be constructive response, such as recommending ways for management to improve the situation, or it can be more confrontational, such as by filing formal grievances.

In the extreme, some employees might engage in counterproductive behaviours to get attention and force changes in the organization.

Loyalty entrenchment

Can be described in different ways, but the most widely held view is that “loyalists” are employees who respond to dissatisfaction by patiently waiting – some say they “suffer in silence” – for the problem to work itself out or get resolved by others.

Neglect  Or withdrawal- Disengagement

Presenteeism…includes reducing work efforts, paying less attention to quality, and increasing absenteeism and lateness. It is generally considered a passive activity that has negative consequences for the organization. (1)


Which of these Reactions are prevalent in your team?

Many aspects impact staff and team reactions.  Many depend on situational factors (‘macro’- environmental, ‘micro’ – company) and other on mindset and attitudinal personal factors. These may include

1.       Employment prospects
2.       Culture in the organisation
3.       Relationship with manager
4.       One’s personality / Mindset
5.       Consequence of positive or negative behaviours

Job dissatisfaction does not always result in poor job output (neglect). It is quite possible for employees to be productive whilst they complain or provide positive feedback (voice); or look for another job (exit) or patiently wait for the problem to fix itself (loyal). (2)


Smart Leaders and Managers need to focus on:

1.       Developing managers (“people don’t quit companies, people quit management”)

2.       Selecting the right staff (“many claim that 66% of employees are in jobs that they not suited to” – job fit)

3.       Engagement with staff (“you win the team over one at a time” – go one on one)


Employees need to focus on:

1.       Choosing career paths carefully (career counselling – before further studies or when transitioning)

2.       Their strengths (Markus Buckingham is a great author on the subject of playing to your strengths, and doing what is right for you)

3.       Engage with people they trust (the more one speaks about their situation, the more the self aware and likely they are to find alternatives and solutions. If you don’t have a good relationship with your boss, work is going to be a drag.)

Where are you on the EVLN model? How shall you continue?

1. Wikipedia (see EVLN model)
2. McShane – Von Glinow. Organisational Behavior (2004)

If you are ready to learn more about Leadership development, or transform your organizational culture, improve staff teamwork and productivity. Develop leadership – contact Tony Dovale on 083-447-6300