Friday, October 8, 2010

No Cost Employee Engagement: is it really that easy?

In a short article by Patrick Lencioni - he believes employee engagement is remarkably simple if leaders understood and practiced the following
  • Be Human - get to know your people better.
  • Connect the Dots - talk to people about how their job impacts the lives of others.
  • Measure Success - help people figure out how they are doing in their job.

For me - the latter two are the same old chestnut that's been forever roasting in the 'HR' fire. We've all heard the old fable of the cleaner is helping to 'put a man on the moon' story. And we can do the same with the bin men (folks who get rid off our trash) or the street cleaner ... that is to say ... 'you are not getting rid of trash, you are vital to the health of everyone in your neighbourhood'. (I don't see many contented bin men in my area)

Be Human. Now that's much more interesting. Here's what Patrick Lencioni says ...

"Take an interest in what is going on in their lives and find out what their dreams and passions are, both professionally and personally. The only caveat is that you have to be genuinely interested. If you haven't done this much before and you're afraid that it will feel weird to start now, do it anyway"

.... hmm ... 'genuinely interested in their dreams and passions'. Does the cut-throat economic juggernaut really have time for this kind of touch-feely stuff?

Lencioni goes on to say "it will require a great deal of courage and selflessness on the part of a manager who will at times feel disengenuous, embarassed or incompetent".

Why have I brought this up?

..... because ..... having witnessed the tepid response David Cameron (UK Prime Minister) got from the Conversative faithfuls on his BIG SOCIETY idea .... I think 'Be Human' is why most leaders are not leaders and simply just managers.

BIG SOCIETY is about being a responsible citizen and contributing towards a better, fairer and more compassionate community. People cared less about that than David Cameron's words about the Conversatives will be in power for more than one term (that got rowsing applauses).

The press says people don't get BIG SOCIETY ... I say they are wrong. People get BIG SOCIETY, they just don't get what it means to be human.

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