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44% of global employees worry over Brexit vote

By Toyin Olasinde
09 August 2016   |   4:12 am
Almost half the global workforce is concerned that the United Kingdom’s (UK) vote to exit the European Union (EU) would have a drastic impact on employment opportunities and endanger job securities across board.
 Publicity Secretary,Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), Lagos State branch; Jide Iyanda, (left) 2nd Vice-Chairman, CIBN, Lagos State branch; Peter Ashade,  Branch Chairman, CIBN, Lagos State branch; Mrs. Taiwo Ige,  1st Vice-Chairman, CIBN, Lagos State Branch; Kola Abdul, and Lawrence Jompe, representative of Ola Olabinjo, Chairman, Organising Committee, 2016 Lagos Bankers’ Nite at a press conference in Lagos.                                              Management(Chartered), Emeritus Professor, Jibril Munzali during the Women in Management and Leadership(WIMLEAD) Conference in Abuja at the weekend.                         Photo Ladidi Lucy Elukpo.

Publicity Secretary,Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), Lagos State branch; Jide Iyanda, (left) 2nd Vice-Chairman, CIBN, Lagos State branch; Peter Ashade, Branch Chairman, CIBN, Lagos State branch; Mrs. Taiwo Ige, 1st Vice-Chairman, CIBN, Lagos State Branch; Kola Abdul, and Lawrence Jompe, representative of Ola Olabinjo, Chairman, Organising Committee, 2016 Lagos Bankers’ Nite at a press conference in Lagos.<br />Management(Chartered), Emeritus Professor, Jibril Munzali during the Women in Management and Leadership(WIMLEAD) Conference in Abuja at the weekend. Photo Ladidi Lucy Elukpo.

Almost half the global workforce is concerned that the United Kingdom’s (UK) vote to exit the European Union (EU) would have a drastic impact on employment opportunities and endanger job securities across board.

The latest report by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) revealed that 44 per cent of working adults are pessimistic about the future as a result of the UK’s vote to leave the EU, while one in five say they feel their job is less secure.

Besides, the survey also highlighted incidents of harassment and bullying in the workplace, relating to the Brexit decision, while about 13 per cent were reported to have experienced harassment or bullying of a political nature.

This recent survey conducted also asked over 1,000 working adults a range of questions, including how they felt about the future as a result of the UK’s vote to leave the EU. The overall result indicated 44 per cent of respondents said they felt pessimistic about the future, with pessimism being particularly high among public sector workers (61 per cent), voluntary sector workers (58 per cent) and people aged 25-34 (63 per cent).

Elsewhere in the survey, more than one in five (22 per cent) employees said that they felt less secure in their jobs as a result of the UK’s vote to leave the EU, compared with just three per cent who felt more secured. Again, this insecurity was particularly evident in the public sector, where a third (33 per cent) of employees said they felt less secure because of the Brexit decision.

“This insecurity was reflected inMr. Lawrence Jompe, the recognition among workers that they need to update their skills. One in five (21 per cent) said that they felt they now need to learn more skills after the UK’s decision to leave the EU.”

Speaking, the Head of Public Policy at the CIPD, Ben Willmott, said: “This survey shows that Brexit has proven to be a seismic event in people’s working lives and reveals that there is significant level of pessimism in the immediate aftermath of the vote.

“This is especially prevalent among public and voluntary sector workers who are already showing signs of feeling less secured in their roles and expect the economic consequences of Brexit to adversely affect their jobs.

“Hopefully, as the political and economic situation becomes clearer, this will subside, but in the short term, there is a clear need for UK employers to do more to engage with their workforce about the likely effects of Brexit on their organisation. The survey exposes clear signs of worry among the UK workforce, and if left unchecked, could lead to associated issues such as stress and anxiety.

“Line managers have a really important role in ensuring that the wellbeing of their staff is front and centre in their minds, and that their organisation has the correct culture and structure in place where people can easily raise their concerns and be heard.

“On a more positive note, the evidence that employees feel they now need to up skills as a result of the UK’s vote to leave the EU demonstrates that employees are engaged with their learning and development needs. It’s vital that employers do not allow the uncertainty around Brexit to cause them to cut back on training and development for the benefit of their staff as well as the resilience of their organisation as a whole in the months of uncertainty ahead.”

The CIPD’s survey also highlighted incidents of harassment and bullying in the workplace, relating to the Brexit decision. More than one in ten employees said that they have experienced, witnessed or heard of incidents of harassment or bullying of a political nature (13 per cent) and just under one in ten (7 per cent) referenced incidents of a racist nature (7 per cent).
Willmott comments: “There is a concerning level of racial and political division in the workplace post-Brexit.”

To nip this in the bud, businesses should take zero tolerance approach to racially and politically motivated conflict linked to the vote and ensure that their workforce feels that they are working in an open and welcoming environment.”

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