Gallup Q12 piramid

Gallup Q12 | The most famous engagement survey

Last updated: 29 MAR 2022

The Gallup Institute is the oldest (established in 1935, USA) and one of the world's most famous public opinion research agencies. It is not a coincidence that its survey, called Q12, examining the employees' engagement, is repeated in the texts and mouths of both HR consultants and managers around the world.

As the name suggests, the survey consists of twelve questions. You might say that this is a small number when we think about such a multidimensional issue as employee engagement. However, the Gallup Q12 survey includes decades of research in this area involving organizations from around the world. The Q12 questionnaire is based on the most relevant questions, which are also linked to the organisation's success. Gallup's research among multiple industries and organizations confirms that changes in management practices that increase employee satisfaction can increase the financial performance of the organization.

The base of the Q12 questionnaire is the hierarchy of the employee's developmental needs. Each of the 12 questions relates to one of the four aspects of this structure, which relates to Maslow's pyramid of needs.


Basic needs (What do I get?)

1. I know what is expected of me at work.

Clear expectations are the base of employees' needs. According to research, consistency of the job description with the actual duties more than doubles involvement in work, reduces employee turnover, and the number of accidents at work.

2. I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right.

When it comes to materials and equipment enabling employees to do their work, issues related to this area are the strongest work stressor. We are talking not only about physical tools but also about intangible resources. Employees can become frustrated with their managers or the company because they set goals and expectations that seem impossible to achieve.

Management support (What do I give?)

3. At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day.

Not being able to show your strong sides at work is one of the main reasons for quitting jobs. One of the most important strategies for managers and organizations is to empower people so they can do what they do the best at work.

4. In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work.

Recognition in the workplace motivates, gives a sense of accomplishment, and makes employees feel appreciated for their work. Employees who do not feel valued are twice as likely to declare that they will quit their jobs within a year.

5. My supervisor, or someone at work, seems to care about me as a person.

People are not numbers. They need to feel that they are treated firstly as persons and secondly as employees. Then they are more likely to share information, support each other, and experiment with new ideas.

6. There is someone at work who encourages my development.

Employees need support in managing their careers. Growth is an essential part of professional life and does not take place in an empty space. Positive motivation (provided by a manager) and development of strong sides can bring measurable benefits.

Teamwork (Do I belong?)

7. At work, my opinions seem to count.

This element of engagement is extremely important and measures employees' self-esteem and contribution. Best managers create a feedback culture that makes people feel involved in a decision-making process.

8. The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important.

It is an emotional, higher-level need. Especially for millennials, it is important that the work they do fits into a broader scheme of meanings. It is worth making sure that the mission and values of the organization are clear and easy to understand in the context of the employees' experience.

9. My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing quality work.

Employees want to function in an environment where there is mutual trust and respect for the efforts of others. Otherwise, a work environment demotivates people to commit and put effort into the work.

10. I have a best friend at work.

This question is the most controversial. However, it is very accurate when it comes to the performance of the teams. If employees have a deep sense of belonging and self-confidence, they can take actions that bring great benefits to the company that they would not have taken if they did not trust each other.

Growth (How can we grow?)

11. In the last six months, someone at work has talked to me about my progress.

It is not just an official assessment. Employees need to know how their work is perceived and what their future will be in the company.

12. This last year, I have had opportunities at work to learn and grow.

When employees feel they are learning and developing, they work harder and more efficiently. But when they have to do the same tasks every day, without a chance to learn something new, they are rarely enthusiastic about their work.

After measuring employees' engagement with the Gallup Q12 survey, it's worth starting an action plan implementation that will ensure the success of your team. The purpose of the Q12 Engagement Survey is not just to ask employees to complete the survey. The goal is to start a dialogue between managers and employees, and next build an environment where employees feel they are a part of the organization. This tool allows employees to communicate their needs and provides information for the managers on what points they should work on. It is a good practice to conduct employee engagement surveys regularly (min. once a year). This allows you to monitor the health of the organization and identify alarming and undesirable events in advance.

Check out the other survey templates we have created for you.

author: Wowka Sapko

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