Just 8% of British employees are engaged at work.

The figure, down from 17% in 2012, means that just “one in 12 British employees are highly involved in and enthusiastic about their work and workplaces,” according to Gallup.

“These employees psychologically “own” their work, helping move their organisations forward by driving performance and innovation.”

Of the rest, 73% are classified as “not engaged,” meaning they are “psychologically unattached and putting little energy or passion into their work.” 19% are “actively disengaged,” feeling that their needs “aren’t being met and likely to be acting out their unhappiness on the job.”

Why don’t more people “own” their work? Gallup say it’s down to bad managers – think David Brent of The Office fame.

“Many of the country’s employers need to consider the extent to which bad managers are hindering their workforces’ performance. Part of the problem is that the talent for effectively managing people is not sufficiently valued in the U.K., so employees are often placed in management positions without the skills they need to succeed in those roles. According to one recent estimate, Britain has about 2.4 million such “accidental” managers.”

Gallup recommend managers are transformed into coaches by following a set of core principles:

  • Establishing expectations that are clear, collaborative and aligned
  • Continually coaching employees
  • Creating meaningful accountability

Read the full report here.