Moldovan employees are hard-working, industrious, but they don't align with company values

July 8, 2024

Traian Chivriga, co-founder and manager of XY Partners

The wave of technological innovation and entrepreneurship that we have seen in Moldova in the last few years has contributed to an increase in the number of office workers and shifts in corporate culture. Start-up founders and managers are increasingly recognizing the key role that their employees and teams play in the success of the companies they run and the need to track and take care of the effectiveness and well-being of their employees. 

“We have a new generation of young people starting their own companies. And when you are developing a start-up, it's important to watch whether you or your team have amassed burnout, disagreement, etc.,” says Traian Chivriga, co-founder and manager of XY Partners. 

As an organization that supports entrepreneurship in Moldova, XY Partners has developed a digital testing tool to help entrepreneurs identify whether their employees are satisfied with their jobs and whether or not they are showing signs of burnout. In its first year,  around 5,000 Moldovan employees used Lumos. The survey revealed that Moldovan employees are efficient at their jobs.

Moldovans – as hard-working and industrious as employees in other countries around the world, but more cynical

Based on a scientific method developed in the U.S. and implemented in 30 countries, the test allows self-assessment on the following aspects: efficiency in accomplishing tasks, burnout, and cynicism. Compared with the statistical data obtained from 50 thousand people globally, Lumos shows that the founders of Moldovan start-ups are enthused about their entrepreneurial activity, which is easy to explain. Founders care about their ideas and appreciate the possibility of implementing them. 

However, not all respondents who tested the Lumos tool found themselves aligned with the companies' or their managers' mission and values, reporting a high level of cynicism and physical fatigue. When it came to burnout, Moldovan employees scored very high. The Lumos test predicts with 80% probability that employees with burnout high scores will leave their jobs within a year.

“It turns out that employees in Moldova perform very well, but they don't understand their purpose or don't believe in the company's purpose. But we don't know what the reasons are. Maybe people don't sleep well, eat properly, or don't do sports or mindfulness practices – we don't know,” says Traian Chivriga. 

“We used the Lumos test in our company, which employs 38 people. It helped us identify some aspects of improving motivation by offering non-financial benefits, such as gym memberships. We also realized that there is room for improving vertical communication in the company,” says Elena Koritskaya, human resource manager at Finergy Tech, a Moldovan company that develops software for banks for the local and international market.

Burnout – a public health problem

As well as impacting job performance, burnout can lead to serious health problems, including depression, anxiety and cardiovascular disease. The creators of the Lumos platform argue that burnout should be treated as a public health problem. 

The Lumos platform also offers solutions to the problems detected by helping respondents with useful information and tools to tackle work-related fatigue, such as consultations with a nutritionist, fitness trainer or psychologist. 

At the same time, XY Partners aim to work with Moldovan entrepreneurs and companies to help them get to know and understand their employees better. 

Implementing prevention strategies such as setting clear work-life boundaries, effective time management and promoting a healthy work environment can significantly reduce the risk of burnout. Recovery from burnout requires adequate rest, social support and, in some cases, professional help. Adopting mindfulness practices and reconnecting with enjoyable activities are essential to restore balance. 

The Lumos platform was developed thanks to funding offered by UNDP within an innovation competition held in partnership with the Electronic Governance Agency and Optim Project – Opportunities through Technologies and Innovation in Moldova, a project of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), implemented by HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation.