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Theresa Welbourne
  Theresa Welbourne

Leadership and Employee Energy Are on the Rise

6/5/2006 --

Study results show higher increases in biotechnology and construction, declines in trade and consulting.

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—Business leadership energy levels have increased since the end of 2005, according to a University of Michigan business professor.

In her recent Leadership Pulse Study, Theresa Welbourne, an adjunct professor of executive education at U-M's Stephen M. Ross School of Business, found that most of the industries that previously indicated having low energy a year ago are now reporting higher energy levels. Energy levels in the construction, transportation and public-utilities industries soared and declined significantly in retail trade and consulting.

"Our research indicates that employee energy predicts turnover, absenteeism, customer satisfaction and other performance metrics in an organization," said Welbourne, who is also founder, president and CEO of eePulse Inc. "These industry trends indicate an increase in leader energy, which in turn helps to increase employee energy, engagement, firm performance and employer excellence."

The Leadership Pulse Study, conducted every two months, trends organizational change, leadership energy and confidence data from a sample of over 4,500 worldwide senior executives in various industries.

In this most recent study, respondents were asked to rate current energy levels and rates where they are most productive (the relationship between these two numbers is important for predicting future outcomes). Energy levels were rated low (0 to 3.74), medium (3.75 to 6.25) and high (6.26 to 10).

Results from the study indicate that since December 2005:

  • The biotechnology (energy level 6.97) and construction (energy level 7.57) industries moved from low-energy zones into their highest productivity levels.
  • Web-based technology, nonprofit agencies and service industries (other than consulting) all fell within the highest energy zones.
  • Moving closer to their optimal energy zones, energy levels in the finance, insurance and real estate (up .17 points), manufacturing (up .28), information technology (up .5) and health care (up .59) industries increased.
  • Energy levels rated below the optimal zones for wholesale trade (down .87 points), engineering (down .69), retail trade (down .58), consulting (down .11) and communications (down .02).

"Our next Leadership Pulse Dialogue will drill down into the reasons for these increases," said Welbourne. "But based on research within client firms, our data indicates that positive results are coming from proactive responses from leaders who aggressively try to improve their energy scores and to more positive economic conditions for many organizations."

For more information, contact:
Heather Thorne
Phone: (734) 936-8421