There are engagement surveys, strategies for engaging employees, and the costs of disengagement. But, none of this is what matters MOST about engagement.
The most important aspect of engagement is the experience of each employee.
I have a good friend (let's call her Veronica), who works at an organization that will remain un-named. I've watched with sadness as Veronica, (who I've known for decades to be a super-productive, creative, and dedicated worker), has slowly gone from super engaged, to less engaged, to UN-engaged, to stressed out and actively disengaged -- over the course of just 6 months.
This sad progression is the result of poor leadership habits and practices that are sucking the life out of the employees at Veronica's organization.
Here's what I see…
Have you ever experienced a similar situation, as an employee and/or as a leader? I have, and it's a DRAG. I've felt the stress of disengagement and experienced the personal impact of poor leadership, first hand. In truth, I may have even disengaged some of my own employees along the way simply due to a lack of awareness. (If I ever did this to you, please forgive me!)
I have to believe that Veronica's manager(s) is unaware of the environment s/he is creating. If they realized the sheer waste of time, cost, and resource their management style was incurring, they'd feel compelled to change.
Leaders: Wake up! Know this: even your SMALL actions make a BIG difference.
Here are 5 common ways that managers can inadvertently disengage their employees and suck the joy out of work:
As a manager or leader, your small and subtle actions can have a profound effect on the lives of others. You can create an environment of empowerment and joy, or resistance and drag.
Look carefully at your daily interactions. Positive interactions and feedback can grow exponentially greater engagement. The 5 "lacks" can become exponentially worse problems. Realize you can make a difference.
Tell me about YOUR experiences. Hit the reply button and tell me about ways you are working to ENGAGE your employees, or STAY ENGAGED yourself.
Make it a great week!
About the Author: Claire Laughlin is a highly regarded training expert who has dedicated her career to studying and improving patterns of communication in organizations. Claire works across various industries, coaching individuals and creating large scale, global-reaching training programs designed to uplift and support excellence across functions and cultural divides. Claire shares her expertise by offering training solutions for all levels of professional development.