Seventy-one percent of American workers are "not engaged" in their work, meaning they are emotionally disconnected from their workplaces and are less likely to be productive. That leaves nearly one-third of workers who are "engaged," or involved in and enthusiastic about their work and contributing to their organizations in a positive manner. This trend has remained relatively stable throughout 2011.

These findings are from a special Gallup Daily tracking series conducted on an ongoing basis since the fourth quarter of 2010 to explore American workers' engagement levels. Gallup's employee engagement index is based on worker responses to 12 actionable workplace elements with proven linkages to performance outcomes, including productivity, customer service, quality, retention, safety, and profit.

Americans who have at least some college education are significantly less likely to be engaged in their jobs than are those with a high school diploma or less. Additionally, workers aged 30 to 64 are less likely to be engaged at work than are those who are younger or older. Workers aged 65 and older are the most likely to be engaged in their jobs.

Business should be concerned that the more highly educated workers are less engaged, says Gallup. The less engaged employees are with their work and their organization, the more likely they are to leave an organization. Turnover can be costly, and turnover in professional roles is more costly than turnover in entry-level or front-line roles.

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