Only 4% of Italians feel involved in their work


In Italy there are the saddest workers in Europe: they are sad without being angry and they are stressed without having great prospects for change.

This is what emerges from the latest Gallup report on the “Global State of the World of Work” : in an overall picture that feels of failure for all workers in the world, if the goal is well-being and happiness , Italy draws a fairly unique in Europe.

In fact, 27% of Italians interviewed declared that they experienced intense sadness in the previous working day, and only Cyprus is worse than us with one percentage point more.

On the other hand, the Finns and Icelanders are not sad, but neither are the Hungarians and the citizens of Kosovo sad, suggesting an assessment that is very influenced by the cultural expectations of the place.

In any case, one in three Italian workers is sad today: if we look around we can guess it from the fold that the mouth takes under the mask or from the inclination of the shoulders forward at the fifth call in the morning. Sadly stuck in digital diaries much more capacious than us.


Anyway, thanks to the good food, the mild climate, the warmth of the family and that exclusively Italian tendency to know how to adapt, we are not in the top ten of the most angry, where after our 21st place most of Eastern Europe is located.

16% of Italian workers say they are angry, but the others? The others don’t, but the feeling is that it is not so much serenity as resignation that counteracts anger.

In fact, when asked: “From 1 to 10 where would you say your life is today: how close to 10 overall, or how likely is it to get there in the future?”; Italy affirms itself in 28th place in Europe, just ten distances from the last place occupied by Cyprus and at the head of a group of countries that tend to be Eastern European.

In first place is Finland, where 84% of workers are happy, then the usual:

  • Denmark
  • Iceland
  • Netherlands
  • Sweden
  • Norway

In Italy, only 40% of people feel in the right direction for happiness. 60%, on the other hand, feel at the bottom of the happiness scale and do not see potential positive progress even in the future.

How does all this translate to work? This being sad but not angry, as if we were resigned to a low degree of happiness?

From the point of view of professional mobility, Italians think that this is a moment in which relocating is literally impossible: we are in last position on this indicator, with only 18% of Italians think it’s a good time to change jobs against 69% of Danes, 53% of Germans and 40% of British.

In short, nailed to your own destiny how do we work?

The main ranking of Gallup summarizes people’s “engagement” context in their work through a summary of the answers to these questions:

  1. I know what is expected of me at work
  2. I have what I need to do it right
  3. every day I have the opportunity to do what I do best
  4. I have received some kind of recognition for my work in the past seven days
  5. My boss seems to care about me as a person
  6. there is someone who encourages my development
  7. my opinion matters
  8. my company’s mission makes me feel that my work is important
  9. my colleagues are committed to doing quality work
  10. I have a best friend at work
  11. For the past six months, I’ve had a conversation about my progress
  12. Over the past year, I have had the opportunity to learn how to grow

According to Gallup, a positive response to the questions above is reflected in an active involvement in one’s job role: people have more energy, are more proactive, more creative, are willing to take risks, have better relationships and are better off. In the end, they work better and produce better. In this ranking, with 4% of people who appear to be “involved” in their work, Italy occupies the 38th and last position in Europe and in the world, where the average is 21%: an already frighteningly low line, yet gigantic compared to ours. Only Japan brings us closer with its 5%.

In Italy we work, in short, as if we had no other choice. As if we were resigned to giving less than we could. As if we were used to stress (declared by 49% of Italian workers), worry (45%) and the mediocrity of that feeling always dissatisfied that concerns the great majority of us (60% of “non thriving” ).

And in return, we give as little as we can and content ourselves with standing on the sidelines hoping to become invisible.