'Listening and showing that you care is not political'
Conversations surrounding politics in the workplace have long been considered taboo - and the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict is no different.
But a new report has discovered that effective communication from top-level leaders might help boost engagement and confidence in company leadership.
New research carried out by The Harris Poll for The Grossman Group found that when employers issue an internal company statement and carry out manager outreach regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, many employees report:
- Higher confidence in company leadership (59%)
- Feeling better aligned with the company culture (54%)
- Increased overall engagement (45%)
When employees only received manager outreach, the results were lower:
- Higher confidence in company leadership (32%)
- Better aligned with the company culture (32%)
- Increased overall engagement (37%)
For employees who only received an internal company statement, the results further declined:
- Higher confidence in company leadership (30%)
- Better aligned with company culture (29%)
- Overall engagement increased (23%)
'Tone deaf' organisations
These results were revealed as top-level leaders continue to shy away from the conversations surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In fact, the report found that just one in five employees said their employer shared an official internal statement, while only one in six employees revealed their manager directly communicated with them on the matter.
David Grossman, founder and CEO of The Grossman Group, said this silence from the top could likely be because the matter was "political."
"That has led many organisations to be tone-deaf to the needs of all employees and concern for their well-being at a time when they're looking to their leaders to respond in some way," Grossman said in a statement.
This comes as the report further discovered that 51% of the respondents said the issue in the Middle East affected them.
"In the case of this Israeli-Palestinian conflict, more than half of employees surveyed reported being affected. That's almost ten times what you might expect from population numbers and five to six times what you might expect from those who said they were directly impacted," Grossman said.
The CEO warned that by not communicating anything, leaders are also "sending a message."
"Listening and showing that you care is not political. Companies that communicated effectively prioritised employee well-being, which led to significantly higher trust in leadership, confidence and engagement, critical elements for overall business success," he said.