The top three demotivators of the workplace: being invisible and undervalued, a lack of recognition and bad managers

A new study from global employee engagement company, Reward Gateway, has found that over seven in ten UK employees want their employers to do more to motivate them.


The research, which surveyed over 2,000 UK employees, found that the less motivated an employee is, the more likely they are to value their salary as a motivator. In the UK, those that are not very motivated in their current job are most likely to say that they’re motivated by their salary (41%), good working relationships (37%), having a purpose (21%)

Whereas, those who class themselves as extremely motivated in their current job are most likely to say that they’re motivated by job satisfaction (52%), feeling respected (37%), having a purpose (37%) and good working relationships (37%).


The research has also uncovered the alarming effects that being unmotivated has on employees. The top five effects being:


  • Mood worsens (60%)
  • Reduction in productivity levels (48%)
  • Declining mental health (46%)
  • Reduction in quality of work (40%)
  • Diet suffers (28%)


Meanwhile, over a quarter (26%) say their relationships with family and friends suffer and 2 in 10 admit to drinking more alcohol when unmotivated.


Despite these effects, those employees that aren’t motivated indicated that  they would stay in a job for 11 months, meaning that productivity and general wellbeing will suffer.


Commenting on the research, Reward Gateway’s Group Director of Product &

Client Success, Rob Boland said, “It’s clear that employers can be doing more to motivate and engage their people in the right way.


“From our research and our experience with thousands of businesses with whom we’ve worked, the companies driving the greatest commercial results are the best at addressing employee motivation. These businesses center their engagement strategies on strategically recognising their employees to boost visibility for great work, communicating openly and honestly with their employees, and surveying their people regularly to understand how to constantly improve and adapt their strategy.


“To continue to help our clients motivate and engage their workforces, we’ve worked hard to make sure our products support what today’s employees crave at work: respect, purpose, and relationships.”


For more information about the motivation study, please visit the blog here.




Other stats:

  • Generation Z (aged 16-24) are most unmotivated by boring or unsatisfying work
  • The older an employee is the more likely a bad manager will impact their motivation
  • Older employees are the most likely out of all age groups to believe that their manager/employers can do nothing more to motivate them, with almost half of over 55 year olds admitting so
  • The older an employee is the more likely they will ‘grin and bear it’ with employees aged between 45-54 staying a mean 13.75 months in an unmotivating job while those aged 16-24 would only stay in an unmotivating role for 5.34 months (almost less than half the national mean)
  • The younger an employee is the more likely that they take no pride in their work
  • Men are more likely than women to be offered financial incentives and are far more likely than women to be motivated by a bonus if they hit targets
  • Those who are not motivated at all are over 10% more likely to value a 3% pay rise than those who see themselves as extremely motivated
  • Those that are extremely motivated choose motivational drivers such as feeling respected and good working relationships