8 Signs of Low Employee Morale

A winning company culture is one where managers and team members work side by side in unison and harmony. They understand their roles and work in sync to achieve their goals and company goals. Ideally, this would go smoothly. But there is no such thing as a perfect workplace. Sometimes, there are things that disturb this dream. One of them is low employee morale.

Low employee morale refers to the general dissatisfaction or lack of enthusiasm shown by employees in a work environment. It is characterized by negative emotions, attitudes and behaviors among team members that can significantly affect the company and its goals. Is your team satisfied with their working conditions? Are your employees happy with their jobs?

If not, you need to get to the root of your organization’s morale. Recognizing these early warning signs is essential to proactively address root causes and implement strategies to improve team dynamics, job satisfaction, and overall employee well-being. Here are some signs of low employee morale to look out for and steps to address them.

1. Decrease in productivity

New and less experienced team members will naturally need more time to adjust to their roles than employees with years of experience.

However, a red flag of low employee morale could be when several new team members are not acquiring the skills needed to excel on the job. This could be a warning that senior team members are unable or unwilling to mentor them.

Decreased productivity can also be a problem for veteran team members. Those who feel unmotivated in their work may not produce as much as before. Or, they may simply be overwhelmed with too much on their plate.

It is important to get to the root of the problem. Is there someone on your team who lacks recognition or motivation? Is there anyone so bogged down with an unmanageable workload? Hopefully, these changes will not only prevent productivity from falling, but also increase productivity with employees above previous levels.

2. High turnover

Invoicing can be costly in terms of time and money. You might think turnover is a huge pain because it costs time and money to find replacement people, and that’s true.

But turnover is more than that: it’s a symptom of bad morals. Turnover can be a big symptom of bad morale. Once your group has reached a point of high turnover, you may have a problem that begs you to investigate its true cause.

And while it’s true that some positions will naturally have higher turnover than others, it’s important to make sure that low morale isn’t the cause. Pay attention to the signs that an employee is about to quit and find the causes.

So what are some common causes of turnover? Maybe new people join the team and they realize there’s a negative culture, poor management, or the job is nothing like it’s described. Or maybe the health insurance is terrible or the bonuses are impossible to get. Maybe there’s a group of people that make it an unwelcoming environment for new hires. Do a little digging and you’ll find that any of these things can cause people to start looking for the exits.

3. Increase in absenteeism

Any positive workplace will encourage employees to take their sick days when they are sick and to take regularly scheduled vacation days. However, a sudden increase in unexplained absences may be cause for concern.

Employee absenteeism and low employee morale are often connected to the workplace. When employees are unhappy or dissatisfied with their job or workplace, they are more likely to miss work or be late, leading to higher rates of absenteeism.

Ironically, frequent absenteeism can also cause low employee morale. When employees are frequently absent, it can place additional stress and workload on their colleagues. At this time, they are looking for management to help them with this issue. If nothing is done, it can lead to resentment and a negative work environment. This, in turn, can contribute to low morale and lack of motivation among the remaining employees.

Could it be that your team is fed up with their work? Or is there something else going on? Be on the lookout for this sign that something may need to change in the work environment.

4. Low employee involvement

How can you become more aware of detachment? There is a clear difference between those who are and are not committed to their work.

Team members who are engaged will want to perform their work to the best of their abilities. They may look for opportunities to “go above and beyond,” either in the way they work with clients or colleagues.

Disengaged team members may lack enthusiasm for their work. They may openly treat customers with apathy, doing the bare minimum. Disengaged team members may even be reluctant to help their teammates when help is needed. Although there are many reasons for low employee participation, Low morale is one to be taken seriously.

Separation is sometimes temporary. Factors external to the job can cause an employee to temporarily stop working. Stressors such as illness, a sick family member, or other life events can put stress on a person’s life. Employers who provide resources for employees in these situations build loyalty and will ultimately prevent disengagement.

5. Negative attitudes

No coach wants to deal with negative attitudes from his team. These can be especially annoying if the team members are a loud and vocal majority. If you have a group of employees complaining or complaining to each other about policies or procedures, this can be a concern. Meeting with employees regularly to find out what their concerns are is a proactive way to avoid this red flag of low employee morale.

Negative attitudes can occur if there is a perception that the rules are not applied uniformly or that some people have an easier workload than others. If some employees maintain a cozy and personal relationship with management, it can create an appearance of bias. So, assess the situation accordingly and judge whether this may be the cause of a change in negative attitude among your team.

6. Increase in internal conflicts

This can be a difficult problem to manage. When employees misbehave with each other or with management, can lead to decreased productivity and can make viewers uncomfortable. New hires can pick up on the tense feeling that people don’t get along. Overall, internal conflicts can be harmful. They can create a very uncomfortable work environment.

It is important to be aware of these conflicts, as well as what might have caused them. Make a plan and act on it. Can you help the team members involved mediate their dispute? Would separating team members be a better course of action? Is either party adding fuel to the fire? Try to identify ways to diffuse the conflict. The final goal must be a positive resolution of the conflict.

7. Poor quality of work

When morale is low, even good employees stop worrying about his work. When this happens, the quality of your work also tends to decrease. This will always hurt a company’s goals. Here are some examples of poor quality work due to low morale:

  • Missed deadlines or incomplete assignments– When morale is low, employees may struggle to meet deadlines or fail to complete tasks. This is because they do not prioritize their work.
  • Lack of attention to detail– An employee may make mistakes or overlook important details in their work. Be aware that this could damage the company’s reputation.
  • Little communication– Employees may choose to communicate less effectively with management, peers, or customers.
  • Inconsistent work- Employees may alternate between good days and bad days frequently. This may be due to the environment on a given day. For example, working days may go well with a coworker they get along with, but not with another coworker they don’t get along with.

8. Low customer satisfaction

When there is low morale in the company, your customers will eventually be affected. At first, it may be possible to prevent your customers from noticing dissatisfaction among employees. However, the truth will eventually be revealed.

Since low morale often leads to poor results, your new customers will notice the lack of quality your company offers. Also, regular customers will notice that you often have new employees and that the employees they are used to working with are no longer with the company.

Solving low employee morale is a customer satisfaction strategy. If you can’t figure out why your customers are complaining or why your service ratings are dropping, evaluate your company’s morale. You will probably find an area where morale is down.


Low employee morale is a common problem, but it is often preventable. There are many signs of this problem. Recognizing low morale is critical to solving the problem and taking steps to fix it.

Erin Shelby on Twitter
Erin Shelby

Staff Writer: Erin Shelby is a writer and blogger based in Ohio. Follow her on Twitter @ByErinShelby

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Item tags:

Business Opportunities · Company Culture · Featured · Find Your Way · Grow Your Business · Leadership · Success · Your Mindset

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Find your way · Grow your business · Lead your team · Your mindset

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At Ikaroa, we understand that maintaining high employee morale is important to keeping a productive workplace. Unfortunately, low morale among employees often leads to reduction in productivity, higher turnover, and other workplace issues. Here are 8 signs of low employee morale and how to address them:

1. Low Productivity – One of the biggest indicators of low morale is a decrease in productivity. When employees are feeling disheartened, they often become less productive, leaving tasks incomplete or taking longer to complete them.

2. Unmotivated Employees – Employees with low morale often seem unmotivated and apathetic. They may be less likely to complete tasks or participate in team activities.

3. Unfriendly Behaviour – When morale is low, employees may resort to unhelpful or negative attitudes and behaviour. Bullying, hostility and gossiping can all be signs that morale is not at its best.

4. Diminished Work Quality – Work quality may suffer when employees have low morale. They may rush through tasks, have sloppy output or become complacent in their work.

5. Increased Complaints – Complaints will often arise with decreased morale. Employees may complain of feeling undervalued or taken advantage of, or they may express feelings of apathy or ennui towards their jobs.

6. Decreased Communication – Low morale can lead employees to withdraw from conversations, meetings and other forms of communication. This can affect team performance and create a feeling of disconnection.

7. Feeling Unfulfilled – When morale is suffering, employees may feel underutilized or under-appreciated. This can lead to a feeling of hopelessness and a loss of enthusiasm for work.

8. Absenteeism – One of the most obvious signs of low morale is an increase in absenteeism. When employees are discouraged, they may take more days off and be less likely to come to work.

At Ikaroa, we recognize that low employee morale is a serious issue and take steps to address it. We encourage open communication and foster an inclusive environment where everyone’s contributions are highly valued. By investing in our employees and keeping morale high, we ensure that our workplace is one that thrives and produces great work.


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