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One-third of workers think that Brexit will harm their career prospects

The referendum decision for Britain to leave the EU has caused all sorts of turmoil across a wide range of activities

In the realm of employment, the uncertainty it introduces has been damaging, which is worrying because it is vital that employers can find the best strategy to get through the exit process to help ensure the British economy survives and prospers.

Recently the company CEB – a company offering best practice insight and technology advice – has suggested that around one-third of British employees see their posts as potentially being threatened by the Brexit process.

At the highest level for two years, the percentage of employees doubtful of their managers’ reputations is now at 71%, while the percentage who do not approve of their bosses’ skills in managing the workforce is now at 73%.

Brian Kropp, who leads HR practice at CEB, says that employees are aware of both great uncertainty in the outcome of negotiations towards Brexit and the general slowdown of business this uncertainty causes. He says that managers are not all doing very well at involving their employees in strategies to deal with this.

This leads to employees who feel that their own posts are at risk and are therefore looking for other possibilities, with 18% reporting actively seeking other roles. Although they may not immediately leave, such dissatisfied employees are less likely to put in the extra work, beyond normal expectations, that they may have in the past.

The managers who have performed worst are those who have relied on a top-down mode of communication rather than a conversation strategy. In times of uncertainty, managers who hand down instructions are finding that their employees are the least prepared to positively involve themselves in the necessary changes and are the most likely to respond negatively to new procedures.

Kropp recommends involving employees in making the necessary plans. Whilst emphasising that change is necessary, they too can be participatory architects of this change.

42% of employees were concerned that their career prospects were under threat. A lack of recognition and poor people management were also powerful elements unsettling employees, all of which pointed to managers’ shortcomings in building trust from employees; in turn, this increased the risk that the workers would have diminishing loyalty to their employers.

These findings come from CEB’s Global Talent Monitor. This is part of its quarterly survey – the Global Labour Market Survey – which questions over 20,000 people in 40 countries.

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