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86% of Indian employees are struggling or suffering, most of them are sad, says Gallup Report

Sumit Vishwakarma
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Indian employees are struggling or suffering

Only 14% of Indian employees feel they are "thriving" in life, while the rest admit to "struggling" or "suffering," according to the Gallup 2024 State of the Global Workplace report.

Gallup released its annual State of the Global Workplace report, revealing a significant decline in employee engagement in South Asia over the past year. Engagement dropped from 33% to 26%, causing the region to fall from first to third in global rankings.

Despite this decline, India, the largest country in South Asia, maintained a relatively high engagement rate of 32%, well above the global average of 23%.

Rise in disengaged employees


Despite South Asia's third-place ranking in engagement, the number of disengaged employees in the region has risen sharply, increasing by 10 percentage points to 56%. In India, 48% of employees are not engaged, and 19% are actively disengaged.

Actively disengaged employees feel disgruntled and disloyal, with many of their workplace needs unmet, leading them to oppose their employer's goals.

Low levels of thriving employees

Many employees in South Asia are struggling or suffering, with the region having the lowest percentage of thriving employees globally at just 15%, 19 percentage points below the global average.

This trend is consistent across all surveyed countries in the region, with India reporting the second-highest rate of thriving at only 14%, behind Nepal at 22%.

High levels of negative emotions

South Asia reports the highest regional percentages of employees experiencing loneliness (29%), anger (34%), and sadness (42%) a lot of the previous day. In India, the rates of anger and sadness are comparable to the regional averages.

"While employee engagement and one's work life are not the sole determinant of life evaluation and daily emotions, career wellbeing plays a foundational role when we investigate what differentiates a thriving life from a struggling or suffering life," said Rajesh Srinivasan, global research director for Gallup's World Poll.

"If someone experiences challenging working conditions, this is likely to impact various other aspects of their health and happiness."

Job market perceptions and turnover intentions

In South Asia, 48% of employees believe it is a good time to find a job, down eight percentage points from the previous year. In India, 57% of employees feel it is a good time to find a job, a 2% decrease from the previous year. The region also ranks second globally for the rate of employees intending to leave their positions, with 58% actively seeking new jobs. In India, this rate is slightly lower at 52%.

"The region's high rate of employees looking to leave their current positions underscores the critical need for employers to engage and support their workforce more effectively," said Srinivasan.

"Employers need to focus on prioritizing their employees' work-life experiences if they want to improve their wellness and reduce turnover."

Mental health and well-being: A closer look

The 2024 Gallup State of the Global Workplace report highlights stark contrasts between Indian employees and their global counterparts.

While 34% of employees worldwide feel they are "thriving," only 14% of Indian employees share this sentiment. Furthermore, 35% of Indian respondents reported experiencing daily anger, the highest in South Asia.

However, India ranked lowest among South Asian countries in terms of stress, with only 32% of respondents experiencing daily stress, compared to 62% in Sri Lanka and 58% in Afghanistan. 

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