A new research report from IT and professional staffing, consulting, managed solutions firm Signature Consultants examines the impact of kind leadership and cultural values on key business and talent outcomes and the degree to which U.S. employers are adopting kindness within the workplace.
According to the firm’s second annual Humankindex Study, 70 percent of C-suite executives and workers agree that a kind leadership and culture leads to improved recruitment, retention, work performance, engagement, and innovation. In addition, 72 percent of C-level executives agree their organization will need to be much more committed to building a culture of kindness to achieve success in today’s landscape.
“The last two years have brought tremendous disruption for people and businesses across the world. This disruption, and its downstream effects, continues to evolve and present new challenges,” says Mahfuz Ahmed, CEO of DISYS and Signature Consultants, in a news release. “With most growth strategies hinging on talent and digital transformation to thrive in the future, our research proves that kind leadership and cultures pave the way for better talent outcomes, greater innovation, and ultimately increased financial performance and competitive advantage. As companies look to become future-ready, the power of kind leadership cannot be overlooked or undervalued.”
Kind leadership is a recruiting and retention game changer
As business and hiring leaders seek to harness new ways of securing talent, the 2022 research finds job seekers will increasingly take leadership and culture into account when making future job decisions. The study finds:
- 83 percent of workers agree that “kind leadership is more important to me than ever when choosing an employer/job.”
- Nearly 9 out of 10 (86 percent) workers agree that a company’s leadership style and culture will have an impact on their future job decision, with 52 percent saying it will have a significant impact.
- 70 percent of C-suite leaders say the top benefit to a culture of kindness is the ability to hire a wider range of specialized talent to drive innovation and success.
- 7 out of 10 C-suite executives agree kind leadership is more vital than ever to recruiting and retaining talent.
Tracking kindness across U.S. employers & workforce
A key element of the research are two indices that measure and track the adoption of kind leadership and practices across U.S. employers and the U.S. workforce. Using a range from 1 to 100, the Humankindex: U.S. Workforce index rose to 60.6 this year, an increase of 2.6 points from 58 in 2021, likely in response to worker perception that employers have embraced kindness (53 percent) and empathy (54 percent) more than any other values since the pandemic.
The first annual Humankindex: U.S. Employers index is 71.5, nearly 11 points higher than the Humankindex: U.S. Workforce, pointing to a general disconnect between business leaders’ beliefs and those of their workers.
“Little has been left unchanged over the past couple of years but one thing is abundantly clear – we are seeing a shift from a singular emphasis on bottom-line results achieved at all costs to a broader emphasis on the importance of an organizational culture and shared purpose to deliver lasting results,” says Ahmed. “As organizations look to move beyond simply surviving to thriving, the opportunity to bring about growth sustained over the long term will require a foundation of kind leadership and increased connectivity between leadership and employees.”
Download an executive summary of the findings here.
The 2022 Humankindex Survey was conducted on behalf of Signature Consultants by national market data services firm, Dynata, between May 4 and May 20, 2022. The survey was administered online to 1,004 full-time (30+ hours per week) workers ages 18 and older and 200 C-level executives, with national representation across age, gender, geographies, and industries. The margin of error for the national quote is +3%, reported at a 95% confidence level.