Levels of motivation are in free fall in British offices

Levels of motivation are in free fall in British offices

Inspiration can be difficult to find and since inspiration tends to go hand in hand with motivation, one can have a serious knock on effect on the other. New research, produced by Red Letter Days for Business, has found that UK firms tend to miss the mark when trying to motive their workforce. The poll also found that young people at work often find motivation hard to find.

Only a sobering 34 percent of employees said they could not name a single occasion where they felt motivated at work last year.

Negative feelings 

The ‘Employee motivation: Who came out on top in 2015?’ report developed by Red Letter Days reveals that despite a quarter (24 percent) of staff saying ‘yes’ they felt motivated at work in 2015, nearly half of the UK workforce collectively felt neutral or negative feelings towards their job. Only as many as 14 percent went as far as to say that they loved their job.

“It’s worrying that only a small percentage of each age group could say ‘yes’ they feel motivated at work. What’s more worrying is how little 18-24 year olds are driven – this is our workforce of the future therefore employers need to do more the nurture this talent,” Bill Alexander, CEO at Red Letter Days for Business commented.


25-34 year olds were found to be the most motivated at work last year, an age group with advancement and aspiration on their mind. A defined personal goal, such achieving a particular pay grade is likely to keep motivation levels higher.


The key factors that drive motivation were found to be a good work/life balance and having an inspirational boss. Great peers, a polite CEO and a pleasant office environment were also important.


The report also considered elements that could affect motivation in the workplace such as hygiene factors and staff recognition and rewards. The results found that flexibility, freedom, high quality tools and recognition are key factors that can have a positive, and negative, impact on a workforce’s drive.

“This research indicates that simple hygiene factors such as where employees work and the tools they’re given to work with have a bigger impact on motivation than employers’ may think,” Alexander continued.

“However, the biggest lesson we all must learn from these insights it that the most motivational elements that create memorable moments with staff appear under the four categories: achieved, challenged, gained knowledge, and recognised.