Employee engagement is top of mind for everyone in HR and leadership roles these days. ’What can we do organizationally to improve the percentage of our employees who are fully engaged at work,’ we ask ourselves. Compensation packages, advancement opportunities, training, and – topping the list - employee recognition, all factor into an organization’s level of success in creating a culture of employee engagement. In this Guest Post from Best-Selling Author Kevin Sheridan, we are reminded that it’s important for each of us to take a self-assessment of our own personal level of engagement as well. What are we doing to optimize our own individual level of zeal for our work.
by Kevin Sheridan
While watching the Chicago Bulls at the United Center, I took this “selfie” and it prompted me to think that every worker needs to regularly take an “engagement selfie.” If you’re not familiar with what this is, let me explain and empower you and your organization.
The Problem with Old Fashioned “Engagement Groupies”
Like Ellen’s famous Oscar selfie — or “groupie” as some called it — earlier this year, employers have been taking “engagement groupies” for years by conducting employee engagement surveys, which group individual responses to protect respondents’ confidentiality. In this process, responsibility for and ownership of engagement rests on the shoulders of employer, creating a paternalistic model where employees have no ownership of and responsibility for their own engagement.
Any relationship should be a two-way street. Whether it’s family, friend, club, church, temple, or community connections, the people involved must give and take to maintain healthy relationships. If one person is always taking and never giving back, others will likely feel the relationship is unbalanced and unfair.
In a work setting, a large part of employees’ engagement stems from their personal choices. I believe each of us wakes up in the morning empowered with the choice of approaching the day and our job with either optimism and engagement, negativity and disengagement, or the apathy that lies in the middle of this engagement continuum.
Are You Making Your Own Luck?
As an entrepreneur, I have a very special appreciation for the importance of self engagement. Anyone who has started a company from scratch could spend hours reciting all the challenges and barriers that threatened the ultimate success of their venture. Almost every successful entrepreneur I’ve known will credit their success to determination and perseverance during the times when all indicators suggested the venture was doomed to fail. Choosing optimism and passionate engagement is what carried them through.
“Luck is the point at which Opportunity meets Preparation,” is a quote attributed to many people, including first-century Roman philosopher Seneca and famed American media mogul Oprah. Whoever said it first had it right, though.
Think about it. Do you make an effort to make your own luck or are you waiting for it to appear from out of nowhere?
Why Every Employee Should Take an “Engagement Selfie”
New situations pose new challenges, and accepting a new challenge begins with choosing an attitude to deal with it. Instead of choosing the road to victimhood and disengagement, we can empower ourselves and choose positivity and engagement.
Try it. Take this free engagement selfie, which will confidentially reveal how engaged you are as an employee, as well as give you useful tips on what you can do on your own to become more engaged at work.
Taking engagement groupies is now passé and antiquated. Still, most organizations aren’t rebalancing ownership of employee engagement to be shared between employer and employees.
Gone are the days when all responsibility was placed on “the company man.” It’s now time we rebalance the ownership of employee engagement by empowering employees to see how engaged they really are and get useful advice on how they themselves can have a powerful effect on their own engagement.
Kevin Sheridan has spent thirty years as a high-level Human Capital Management consultant and Keynote Speaker. He has helped some of the world’s largest corporations break down detrimental processes and rebuild a culture that fosters productive engagement, earning him several distinctive awards and honors in the process. Kevin’s premier creation, PEER®, is consistently recognized as a long overdue, industry-changing innovation in the field of Employee Engagement, and his most recent book, “Building a Magnetic Culture,” made the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today best-seller lists.
Web page: www.kevinsheridanllc.com
Twitter: @ kevinsheridan12