Report: Low-Morale Experience Assessment Survey (January 2020)

The third session of my Library Juice Academy course, “Deconstructing the Low-Morale Experience in Academic Libraries,” is beginning its third week. I asked students enrolled in the course to participate in a quick Low-Morale Experience Assessment survey, just so we could get a quick gauge on what the landscape looks like for this cohort.

Course attendees agreed I could share the aggregated results. There are twenty people enrolled in the class, and they hail from from academic libraries of all sizes across North America. The following results reflect the responses of thirteen participants (survey participation was optional). 

  • 77% have experienced low-morale according to the 2017 Kendrick study definition.
  • 69% indicate their low morale experience is  occurring in their current workplace.
  • 42% indicate their experience has lasted one to three years; 33% indicate more than three years.
  • 85% indicate that the perpetrators are library supervisors or managers; 69% indicate library administrators; 69% indicate library colleagues.
  • 69% indicate they experience(d) negligence; 62% emotional abuse; 54% verbal/written abuse; 54% system abuse.
  • Uncertainty & Mistrust (92%), Leadership Styles (92%), Staffing/Employment (69%), Library/Librarian Perceptions (62%); and Contagion (54%) are major contributors to the LME.
  • 100% of respondents indicate feelings of Disillusion; 85% of respondents indicate Depression; 77% indicated Anger; 77% indicated Sadness; 62% indicated Regret; 62% indicated Shame; 62% felt Worry; 54% indicated Skepticism. Other feelings included Loneliness (1%)
  • 39% have developed physical health conditions as result of the LME, including pre-diabetes, weight gain, shingles, and teeth-clenching conditions.
  • 39% have developed mental health conditions as a result of the LME, including anxiety and (increased) depression, and panic attacks.
  • 77% have noticed a decrease in professional engagement; 69% have noticed a decrease in work productivity; 62% have noticed increased procrastination; 62% have a decreased desire to collaborate; 62% have a desire to change careers; 53% have noticed a decrease in professional development.

These results give a real-time snapshot of the low-morale experience as perceived by colleagues currently dealing with this phenomenon. I appreciate their willingness to allow me to share this data with the public.

View the May 2019 cohort’s Low-Morale Experience Assessment Survey results.

View the October 2018 cohort’s Low-Morale Experience Assessment Survey results.

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