What All Managers Should Know about Employee Data

When you think about the characteristics of a successful manager, what comes to mind? Some descriptors may be creative, intuitive, committed, and disciplined. But what about precise, comprehensive, and calculated? These qualities often go under the radar when describing effective management, but are arguably some of the most important.

The ability to make carefully formulated decisions and judgements regarding employees are what can make work teams function seamlessly. How can this be done?


Data provides managers with the tools and resources to truly lead people, rather than simply manage. At Plasticity, we know that employee insights are central to the happiness and motivation of teams. Yes, interpersonal skills are important, but it’s time to debunk the myth that managers are mind-readers! For people to feel truly valued, managers need the cold-hard facts about their employees. This will help them in supporting their instinct and providing new perspective to decision-making.

Plasticity’s co-founder Jennifer Moss explains why managers should be prioritizing employee data analytics in her book, “Unlocking Happiness at Work”:

“The reason why data is so helpful in dealing with change is that rationale for change can be translated to others with scientific fact. Having gut instinct is important to strong leadership, but when it comes to making a decision like letting someone go or a decision with the same level of seriousness, having data to back up that choice is very helpful.

Also, it helps us to wrap our brains around the choices that others make for us. If we feel a level of psychological safety and trust in the leaders who are enacting the changes, this can be a deciding factor on how well, or poorly, shift will be perceived.”

So not only do insights help managers make sound decisions, but they also help employees feel “a level of psychological safety and trust”, and allow them to be involved in the rationale behind company decisions and changes. As an employee, how many times have you felt left in the dark with non-transparent decisions made by your managers? This can be demotivating, discouraging, and create a distance between teams.

Real-time data can be a tool for managers to leverage their leadership power, be more in tune with employees, and make more strategic and innovative decisions for the company.

You can pre-order Jennifer’s book, “Unlocking Happiness at Work: How a Data-driven Happiness Strategy Fuels Purpose, Passion and Performance” on Amazon today.

Sarah Hay