Why Are Your Employees Dissatisfied?


Not everyone is satisfied with their jobs, some find it easier to just quit and look for other jobs others simply quit while others choose to stay for one reason or another. Dissatisfied employees are rarely productive, actually they are counter-productive and as such it’s important that the issue be addressed with care. The answer to issues regarding the resolutions of resolving employee dissatisfactions most of the time lies in the reasons as to why they are dissatisfied in the first place. On that note this post will serve to highlight and explain some of the main causes of employee dissatisfaction.


This is the number one cause in employee dissatisfaction. One of the main reasons for working is so that we can earn money and in as much as some work for the love of what they do many are there simply because of the check at the end of the month. For many, money is a very big motivator. That being said when an employee is being underpaid chances are they are very unhappy. This will result to them underperforming or simply not performing at all. Some quit and some ‘hang around’ until they get a better job and instead of working they may choose to spend their time and the company’s resources looking for that other job. You know make extra cash on the side on the company’s dime.


Some just show up in the morning and decide to do their own things and leave at the end of the day having not done anything. They just want to make sure that they were seen at work. This routine might continue until either; the problem is resolved, they have enough and decide to quite or they are relieved of their duties. Others might even decide to sabotage the company. It could be by taking some of the company’s biggest clients when they leave or leaking sensitive information about the company that ends up being a PR nightmare.


Micromanagement is a management style in which bosses or employers monitor and closely control the activities of the employees. It might result from the need to monitor the employees’ performance or from the lack of trust. In some businesses the intent to micromanage might have been good but the end products might be negative. This is because the employees may end up feeling like you don’t trust them. In some cases it might be true that the employer does not trust the employee thus the micromanagement but in others it might be a completely different thing. Now, the feeling of mistrust between employer and employee will most likely result to a buildup of animosity. They become unhappy, some suffer quietly but in some cases others choose to lash out.

If it feels very necessary for a manager to micromanager, in most cases it is not, then it is advisable to do it without it being too obvious. Make the employee feel like they have some wiggle room, that they can to do their work and make independent decisions without round the clock supervision. They should feel like they are important and that the management believes in their ability to deliver in their capacity. Isn’t that why you hired them in the first place? Why hire an employee only to tell them what to do? Granted some guidance and monitoring is necessary from time to time but for the most part the mode of delivery and the frequency is very crucial. Give the employee some freedom to make decisions too.

Limited career growth

Nobody wants to remain in the same place year in year out. Every employee wants to grow in their career. If an employee gets the feeling that they are stuck in the same place for a very long time and still the chances of growing in their career is limited you are going to have a very unhappy employee. And it is even worse if they feel that they are the only ones who are stagnant. If they have seen new employees coming and getting promoted and they are still in the same place that is a sure sign of trouble. Managers should make sure to make employees feel that they are learning and moving up the ladder. It might not even be a promotion but the employer could try having the employee take on more responsibilities.

Job insecurity

Job security is another important factor that contributes to the satisfaction of an employee. If an employee is feeling insecure they will not be productive because they will end up spending time being worried and preparing for the worst and very little time working. A company may use tactics such as investing in the employees through training and the likes in a bid to reassure the employees of their job security.

Poor working conditions

When employees are subjected to poor working conditions you can bet they will be unhappy. Such conditions can be anything from crowded offices, bad air conditioning, unsecure locations to limited office supplies. When the working conditions are not very suitable of course the workers will not be happy. In as much as not all companies are in a position to provide luxuries to their employees like all-paid-for meals, company cars and a corner office for everyone they should at least strive to make it comfortable and safe. The company should be able to provide the necessary resources to do the work. Something like the lack of simple office stationary is enough to have your employees grumbling.

Lack of appreciation.

An employee should be able to feel like their efforts at work are appreciated. If they do something worth a pat on the back make sure to let them know. It gives them a sense of accomplishments. Give credit where it’s due. At times some companies focus more on rewarding seniority instead of performance. A low level employee had a great idea that ended up saving the business a lot of money but instead of giving them credit the management decided to reward the head of the said department. In such a scenario the employee will feel unappreciated. They worked hard to contribute positively but the manager ends up getting the credit simply because they are the head of department and have been there longer.

At times the feeling of being unappreciated comes from not being consulted. If there are major decisions to be made it is not enough just to have top management make the decisions. They should consult all the employees. Consulting does not mean that the management has to implement what the employees want. It simply serves to A, let top management know what the employees think or want and B, make them feel that they are part of the team.


In an effort to give employees more responsibilities the managers often times end up overburdening the workers. The worker then gets to a point where they have a lot of things to do that are either halfway done or not done at all. Maybe the manager was looking to give extra duties to get more out of the employee or exploit their potential but in the process they ended over burdening the employee. The employee then finds themselves in a position where they are taking on the new duties and neglecting the ones they were hired to do in the first place. When it comes to the review part it then feels like they are not delivering at all. While it is advisable to make your employees more responsible an employer should make sure not to overburden their employee.

Overworking an employee can also be seen in having them always putting in extra hours. Once in a while some situations call for employees to put in extra hours but this should not always be the case. Compensating for overtime is a good idea but keep in mind that your employees also have a life outside of work that might be suffering as a result of them working overtime.


Miscommunication can present itself in many forms. It could be that there are no clear instructions in terms of what to do and how to do it. It could also be in terms of infrequency of communication or an employee having different messages communicated to them by multiple people. This happens when there are no clear channels of communication or chain of command. Miscommunication can also manifest in the form of limited information. Employees need to know what is going on in the company as such employers should make it their duty to keep them up to date at least on the most important happenings. New mergers, acquisitions, changes in management, company performance, profits or losses and the likes.

Keeping employees happy and satisfied is no mean fete but there are things that one can do to at least mitigate some of the common causes of employee dissatisfaction. From time to time try and evaluate your employees’ level of satisfaction. How? Ask them. This way the management will be in a position to catch the issues as they arise otherwise they risk a full blow out when the employees get to their breaking point. Have an open door policy or other ways of collecting feedback. Things like suggestions boxes might be considered old fashioned but you would be surprised how helpful they can be. Have incentives in place to motivate your employees and rewards to give credit where it’s due. Invest in your employees and to show them that they are in for the long term and that you are not looking to replace them. Remember it’s always the little things that count.

Leave your comments below. We’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic.


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