Letting go of the way things were:
@HarrisPoll's trended data shows a steady decline in the amount of Americans who say core aspects of their lifestyle will return to normal. More from the #COVID19 tracker here: https://theharrispoll.com/the-harris-poll-covid19-tracker/
Our data was recently featured in a @Microsoft report discussing how work has changed drastically over the last four months. The report examines what people consider as the good/bad aspects of remote work and what the future brings. Read the report here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/blog/2020/07/08/future-work-good-challenging-unknown/
Our exclusive @[email protected] survey found a majority of Americans are cautious about venturing back into the office—and believe health should be prioritized over the economy for now. Read the full article here: https://www.chicagobusiness.com/greg-hinz-politics/where-america-stands-covid-pandemic
In the last four months, work has changed drastically. But will these changes persist into the future? Our second Work Trend Index report explores this idea by combining insights from three sources: trends behind how our customers use our tools; findings from a Harris Poll survey of over 2,000 remote workers in six countries; and conclusions from over 30 research projects from across Microsoft that seek to understand the experience for remote workers today via surveys, interviews, diary studies, focus groups, and studies of the human brain.
Our goal for this research is to uncover both good and challenging aspects of remote work so we can accelerate product development in the right areas, anticipate how work will change in the future, and help our customers thrive in this new world of work.
The population reflected in the data consisted of information workers at small, medium and large enterprises and is not inclusive of the entire workforce. Read on for our key findings
Brainwaves reveal remote meeting fatigue is real
A commonly discussed pain point of remote work is that it can feel more challenging or tiring than in-person collaboration. Researchers from our Human Factors Labs recently set out to understand this phenomenon. Do remote work and video meetings actually tax our brain more than in-person work? The brain science suggests, yes.
Remote collaboration is more difficult, but the transition back to in-person work might be just as hard
In our Human Factors Labs, where we study how humans interact with technology, scientists ran an experiment to understand how the brain responds to collaborating remotely through computer screens compared to in person. This study began pre-COVID as part of ongoing work in Microsoft around the remote work experience. They asked 13 teams of two to complete similar tasks together –
Video meetings lead to fatigue
A second study found that brainwave markers associated with overwork and stress are significantly higher in video meetings than non-meeting work like writing emails. Further, due to high levels of sustained concentration fatigue begins to set in 30-40 minutes into a meeting. Looking at days filled with video meetings, stress begins to set in at about two hours into the day. The research suggests several factors lead to this sense of meeting fatigue: having to focus continuously on the screen to extract relevant information and stay engaged; reduced non-verbal cues that help you read the room or know whose turn it is to talk; and screen sharing with very little view of the people you are interacting with.
To help with this, we recommend taking regular breaks every two hours to let your brain re-charge, limiting meetings to 30 minutes, or punctuating long meetings with small breaks when possible.
To help address these challenges through our technology, today we also released a series of updates to Teams designed to help create more human connection with people you’re working with and to reduce meeting fatigue—
Read the full story at Microsoft.
Working with Crain’s editors, researchers at The Harris Poll will poll a representative sample of C-suite executives in metro Chicago each month to detect changes in their outlook and sentiment.
The Harris Poll and Crain’s Chicago Business have formed an exclusive partnership to conduct an ongoing poll of business leaders. The new surveys will enable Crain’s to provide an additional stream of data-based coverage crucial to the more than 70,000 digital and print subscribers who turn to Crain’s every week for insight.
Working with Crain’s editors, researchers at The Harris Poll will poll a representative sample of C-suite executives in metro Chicago each month to detect changes in their outlook and sentiment and, through a series of topical questions, discover their opinions on relevant issues to Crain’s readers as they seek to better understand the noisy world around them.
Among the topics to be explored are how well the business community thinks elected officials are managing tough issues dogging Chicago, Illinois and the Midwest, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and recession, and the depth of private sector support for solutions that these officials have offered or are considering.
Future polls will explore other topics of civic and economic importance, including racial inequities and corporate diversity efforts, workplace and management issues, consumer attitudes toward prominent Chicago-based brands and Illinois voters’ preferences in upcoming elections.
“As market research experts, we know there’s a link between the viewpoints of the electorate and the success of government at all levels,” says Will Johnson, CEO of The Harris Poll. “We’re here to help Crain’s readers better see that connection or, as we may also see, that disconnection.”
“We at The Harris Poll also are driven by our own rootedness to Chicago,” Johnson says. “My family and I live in Chicago, and I have a deep interest in doing what I can so that the city can thrive as a world-class commercial capital where people want to raise families and grow businesses.”
"We are thrilled to partner with The Harris Poll as we continue to strive to keep our subscribers informed with more exclusive content and data,” says Jim Kirk, publisher and executive editor of Crain’s. “We look forward to working with Harris to jointly produce the most comprehensive local polling across a broad spectrum of relevant topics.”
About The Harris Poll:
Founded in 1963 by pollster Lou Harris, The Harris Poll is one of the world’s leading public opinion, social intelligence and strategy firms. Through continuous pulsing of society in the U.S. and internationally, Harris helps clients interpret, adapt and respond to constantly changing issues. Widely recognized for its polls and insight on voter sentiment, The Harris Poll also leverages bespoke polls to advise Fortune 500 C-suites on how to meet the evolving needs and wants of their customers and other stakeholders.
In 2017, The Harris Poll joined the Stagwell Group to create the largest independent data-driven digital market services firm in the U.S. The Harris Poll is run by co-CEOs Will Johnson and John Gerzema, two veteran strategists with backgrounds in analytics and brand marketing from senior roles at WPP agencies BAV Consulting and Young & Rubicam.
About Crain’s Chicago Business:
For over 40 years, Crain's Chicago Business has been the premier source of local business news and information for the Chicago area's influential business executives. Every week Crain's print edition delivers scoop-oriented articles, enlightening features and invaluable industry rankings. Crain's award-winning website, ChicagoBusiness.com, is an essential online tool for news, information and statistics about doing business in Chicago. Crain's Chicago Business is a Crain Communications Inc publication.
Read the full article at Crain's.
An exclusive Harris survey finds a majority of Americans are cautious about venturing back into the office—and believe health should be prioritized over the economy for now.
Americans generally approve of how state and local officials have handled the COVID-19 pandemic. But even as a significant minority pushes for a faster reopening, most are worried to very worried about what will happen later this fall, with a whopping 1 in 3 saying office buildings should not reopen for at least a few months—if ever.
So says the American public in a unique mid-pandemic survey prepared for Crain’s Chicago Business by The Harris Poll, a nationally known polling operation that will be regularly producing looks at public opinion with Crain’s, this one national but future ones more focused on Chicago and Illinois.
Harris interviewed more than 2,000 adults nationwide to get a snapshot of how the battle against COVID-19 is going in the public’s view and what should happen next. Opinion is clearly conflicted on some points, but incredibly solid on others. For instance, even as reported COVID cases are spiking in many states in the South and West, 86 percent of Americans—and 95 percent of those aged 65 or older—told Harris they believe another spike will occur later this year during the normal fall flu season.
Here are the highlights.
Asked how their local mayor or governor is doing so far, 78 percent and 76 percent, respectively, give marks of at least “fair," with 51 percent and 54 percent saying “very good” or “good.”
Similarly, a clear majority, 57 percent, said the economic reopening and easing of stay-home orders should not have occurred more quickly. Public opinion among Midwest residents surveyed generally tracks the national figures, with 59 percent approving of the timing and 41 percent disapproving.
Pressed in two questions about what should happen next, the public is divided but tilts toward making health the priority.
Forty-three percent of those surveyed said mayors should make limiting the spread of COVID-19 the priority over reopening business, with 35 percent saying both should be equal priorities. Just 15 percent—about 1 in 6—said reopening should be the priority.
“The reopening and economic recovery could take time if elected officials follow the public's direction,” said Harris CEO Will Johnson. “Almost half of all respondents in the Midwest and nationally say the top priority for local and state government is to limit the spread of COVID-19, without consideration of economic costs. Only 1 in 7 say the economy should be the top priority."
Asked specifically about reopening offices, 8 percent said workplaces should reopen immediately without restrictions, and another 56 percent said sometime this summer, with safety requirements in place. But 19 percent said offices should wait until “fall/winter” to reopen, and an additional 17 percent said offices should stay shut “indefinitely.”
That won’t be good news to Chicago’s reeling office sector and suggests people may be getting used to working from home.
"Many people aren't in any hurry to return to the office,” said Johnson, The Harris Poll chief. "That has implications for commercial hubs like downtown Chicago, which depend on a big influx of commuters every weekday for support.”
• A quarter of the sample, including half of those aged 18-34, know someone who has been tested for COVID, with 3 in 10 knowing someone who is positive and 10 percent knowing someone who has died from the infection.
• Latinos are most likely to get tested, with 30 percent of those of Hispanic origin saying they have done some, compared to 25 percent of Blacks and 19 percent of whites. Another 5 percent said they’ve tried to get tested but were not able to do so.
• Safety masks are popular, at least in theory. Seventy-seven percent of those surveyed say they wear masks every time/most of the time when they are out in public. But only 49 percent say all or almost all of those they see out are doing so.
The Harris Poll was conducted online within the United States from June 30 to July 2 among 2,041 people aged 18 and older. The survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of potential sampling error is available.
Read the full article at Crain's.
Consumers are split along racial, age, gender, geographic and political lines: Ad Age-The Harris Poll
Companies using stereotypical Black characters or names on product packaging agree: It's time to review brand imagery to avoid contributing to systemic racism.
Last month, Cream of Wheat, Aunt Jemima, Mrs. Butterworth's and Uncle Ben's announced brand reviews after finding themselves in the spotlight amid the growing racial justice movement. The moves come months after Land O'Lakes began removing the image of a Native American woman from its packaging.
Customers, however, are sharply divided on the issue along racial, age, gender, geographic and political lines, according to the latest Ad Age-The Harris Poll, conducted among almost 2,000 consumers—894 men and 1,068 women—nationwide.
Among the Ad Age-The Harris Poll findings:
Younger generations want more change. Fifty-two percent of 18-to-34-year-olds believe the image on Aunt Jemima products should be replaced, compared with 47 percent of 35-to-49-year-olds, 32 percent of 50-to-64-year-olds and 33 percent of those 65 and older.
"An absolute disgrace and truly disgusting!" said an 18-year-old white woman from Florida. "America is one of the worst places for racism and it's terrible that people of color have to live this way. But white people don't want to hear about racism? It's a shame."
More men than women believe these products should be rebranded. Just 19 percent of women believe Cream of Wheat packaging perpetuates a damaging racial stereotype, compared with 32 percent of men.
"Aunt Jemima for one is not in any way an insult to anyone," said a 65-year-old New Jersey woman. "It is just a great brand name that is an institution. This goes for other branding." And from a 61-year-old Indiana woman: "Aunt Jemima, Uncle Ben's, etc., are brands that have been around forever [and] for me just a brand name and had no more meaning than that."
Eighty-one percent of women regard Cream of Wheat as a well-known and trusted brand that would be throwing away equity built up over the years by rebranding, compared with 68 percent of men.
In some cases, women feel more strongly about the need to replace existing imagery. Forty-one percent of women believe Aunt Jemima should change the image on its packaging, compared with only 32 percent of men.
Republicans think it's less important for companies to rebrand. Eighty-two percent of Republicans strongly/somewhat agree that the brands are fine and that they are being too politically correct, compared with 56 percent of Democrats.
"All this is getting out of hand and people need to stop already," said a 40-year-old woman from California, whose political affiliation was not given, echoing the sentiment.
African-Americans are most supportive of rebranding. Fifty-one percent of Black men and 64 percent of Black women believe Aunt Jemima should be rebranded, compared with 47 percent and 32 percent of white men and women, respectively. For Uncle Ben’s 47 percent of Black men and 52 percent of Black women support rebranding, compared to 37 percent and 24 percent, respectively, of white men and women.
Several Black respondents said rebranding is only a start.
"Get rid of racially insensitive images, but recognize that it's not enough," said a 35-year old Black woman from Virginia. "More needs to be done, such as ensuring Black people have leadership positions in your company, including positions in the C-suite."
Will Johnson, CEO of The The Harris Poll, outlined the opportunity for brands:
"It is clear from the data that CPG companies need to listen most to communities whose likeness are being portrayed by these brands, he said. "Most African-Americans—and two thirds of Black women—say Aunt Jemima is perpetuating a damaging racial stereotype, and almost half put Uncle Ben's, Mrs. Butterworth, Cream of Wheat and Chiquita Banana in this same category."
The Ad Age-The Harris Poll asked consumers' opinions about brand names and imagery perpetuating racial stereotypes, whether names and imagery should be changed and whether brands would be missed if discontinued. Some respondents also had messages for companies both using such imagery as well as those planning to change it.
The poll also found that:
City dwellers favor changes to brand images more than 2-to-1 over rural residents. Fifty-six percent percent of urbanites, for instance, say Aunt Jemima should replace the image on its products, compared with 26 percent of rural residents.
"Don't use stereotypes," said a 37-year-old New York woman. A 38-year-old New York woman put it this way: "These characters depict racial stereotypes that subjugate Black people and demean them and their humanity."
Three-quarters of all racial groups say they'd continue buying these products under a new brand name. Sixty-six percent of white people would miss Aunt Jemima, compared to 54 percent of African-Americans and 72 percent of Hispanics.
"Brands should also take guidance from other products that have successfully rebranded after they were called out for perpetuating damaging racial stereotypes—such as Frito Bandito," Johnson says. "Aunt Jemima, under a new name and/or image, would, too, based on this poll."
Brands hoping to gain customer support by eliminating racial stereotypes from packaging might be surprised by this poll finding: Some consumers who support brand refreshes also think brands are being too politically correct.
Sixty-one percent of 18-to-34-year-olds believe brands are being too politically correct, while 51 percent of the same age group believe brands should remove harmful stereotypes.
The breakdown by race:
Among white respondents, 73 percent of men and women say brands are being too politically correct, while 46 percent of men and 32 percent of women support the removal of racial stereotypes.
Among Black respondents, 59 percent of men and 47 percent of women say brands are being too politically correct, while 48 percent of men and 72 percent of women support the removal of racial stereotypes.
One respondent, a 66-year-old Black man from North Carolina, had his own suggestion for brands.
"Aunt Jemima pancake syrup and mix and Uncle Ben's rice, a lot of us grew up with these brands and enjoyed them very much," he said. "So don't change a thing."
NO CONSENSUS ON REMOVING RACIAL STEREOTYPES FROM PACKAGING
Consumers are divided by race, gender, age, income, and politics
Numbers reflect percentage of consumers in each demographic (gender, race, etc.) who endorse rebranding, believe brands are perpetuating damaging racial stereotypes and who would miss certain brands if discontinued.
Read the full article at Ad Age.
Women, especially middle-aged ones, have been hit the hardest by the coronavirus pandemic in terms of job loss, fewer options for remote work, and needing more time to recover financially from the crisis, according to a new survey from Harris Poll and Yahoo Finance.
Nearly all men between the ages of 35 and 44 — 96% — were still working the same job as before the pandemic, only 60% of women the same age were, according to the survey of 2033 Americans. The latest unemployment rate shows 8.9% unemployment for men in that age group and 9.4% for women in June.
A similar discrepancy shows up between men and women who are 45 to 54. More than three-quarters of men that age have the same job, but just under 6 in 10 women do, the survey found.
That difference, among others found in the survey, could mean it will take longer for women to recuperate from the pandemic’s economic effects — if they ever fully do.
“This recession already has undone years of work, and the implication for women in particular, really may be very long-lasting,” said Martha Gimbel, manager of economic research at Schmidt Future. “Losing a year of work is really devastating. That's what a lot of people are facing if the public health crisis doesn't get under control.”
Middle-aged women also fare worse than men when they become unemployed. Women between 35 and 54 are more likely to say job loss is permanent compared with men the same age. Just 1% of men between 35 and 44 and 45 and 54 report a permanent job loss, versus 8% of women between 35 and 44 and 4% of women between 45 and 54, according to the survey.
Women are more likely to work in sectors like state, local government, and education that have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic and will need more time to recover from this crisis.
“We are facing a long period of depressed consumer demand and women tend to work in services, but the service-providing industry has been devastated in this recession,” Gimbel said. “So, women may take a long time to see the jobs that they've been working in come back.”
‘It's hard to enjoy working from home when it involves doing two jobs’
Remote work is more available for male workers than female ones, with 86% of men between the ages of 34 and 45 reporting work-from-home as an option compared with only 54% of their female counterparts. There’s a much smaller difference for those between 44 and 55 years. Just under half of men (47%) could work remotely versus 44% of women.
While middle-aged women are less likely to have the option for remote work, when they do have it, they find it less satisfying than their workplaces compared with men. Just over half of the men, 52% between 35 and 45 and 50% of those between 45 and 54 found working from home much or somewhat better than their offices, while 46% of women between 35 and 44 and 36% of women between 45 and 54 say the same thing.
“It's hard to enjoy working from home when it involves doing two jobs,” Gimbel said. “We know that women who are working from home are also disproportionately handling childcare and other domestic duties.”
Seven-in-ten women said they’re mostly responsible for the housework duties during the pandemic, while 2-in-10 men reported the same, according to a poll by Morning Consult for The New York Times. So for many men, work-from-home allows them to avoid their commute, while the arrangement for women doesn’t allow them a break from domestic duties.
‘Going to have really long repercussions’
While more women in the 35- to 54-age range said they have received stimulus checks or unemployment benefits compared with men, they see these payments less helpful than their male counterparts, perhaps because they have suffered more job losses.
Two-thirds of women between 34 and 45 found the government stimulus payment or unemployment benefits a great deal or somewhat helpful, compared with almost three-quarters of their male counterparts.
Women also see their financial recovery taking longer, with 84% of men between 35 and 44 anticipating their spending returning to normal in the next year, compared with just over half of women in the same age group.
This “is going to have really long repercussions,” according to Gimbel.
“So much of the gender wage gap is explained by differences in occupation and industry, and right now, you know it's going to be harder for women to make those moves into higher-paying occupations,” she said. “We can really see the gender wage gap held back by this for a really long period of time.”
Read the full article at Yahoo Finance.