Employee Engagement: Rub the Magic Lamp

I shared a link on LinkedIn and Facebook last week for an article in the Australian Financial Review about Employee Engagement. The article: “Special touches add snap, crackle and Pop” talks about what some of the biggest organisations are doing in order to make sure they don’t lose their key people. The companies included, Microsoft, Kellogs, Mars and Adidas to name a few.

In the process of engaging their people; they are also making a serious impact in an upwards direction to the bottom line! The crux of the article was all about giving evidence to support that giving employees some of what they truly VALUE as individuals actually increases productivity, rather than decreasing it.

We are all a certain way in our personal lives. The way we work out (or don’t); what we like to eat; when we like to take breaks; how we communicate; when we are most energetic etc. I could go on and on here but the point is that we don’t suddenly switch these behaviours off, have a lobotomy and then step into our workplaces as different people who all happen to exhibit the same values, desires and behavioural traits; only to switch back at 5.30pm.

Well do we?? Hardly; If I am different to Joe Bloggs in my personal life, then I will be just as different to him at work; and yet: we are managed the same way, rewarded in the same structure and have the same hours; despite the fact that he is a late afternoon person and I am done by 3.00pm as am firing on all cylinders at 7.00am. Clearly this is a hypothetical situation as firstly; I’m yet to meet anyone called Joe Bloggs and the only person who rewards me; is me! I know exactly what I want and when I want it so I’m set…

However, if you manage teams of people, knowing what gets your individual people moving and how you can give them something in the workplace and management structure that will make their hearts soar and their pulse rates shift up a few gears with excitement, is like being handed Aladdin’s magic lamp!

We are all individuals and have our own set of values. Therefore, our people need to be managed and rewarded based on what will work for them and this will in turn increase levels of productivity and lower turnover rates.  When companies can fully appreciate what this means and how they can go about instilling individual desires and needs into their workplaces, individual productivity rates can and do skyrocket.

People do not leave organisations for increases in salary unless they are poorly paid in the first place. They leave because they have no sense of belonging to something bigger than their immediate job role. If the job role is a step on the way to something else or not really where they want to be; you will lose them without a career path and a workplace which inspires and shows them that they do in fact matter.

Clear roles, achievable and interesting career development plans which show the importance of an individual’s contribution and a transparency to company direction is essential. A set of values which are VALUED by everyone, meaning they have had input into what they actually are; is the first step. The values must be able to be demonstrated and actually promoted, not just talked about.

Exciting times are here and there is a real opportunity for companies to retain and develop their teams, making the most of all the wonderful attributes we all have in our varied and dynamic ways! We can all have some fun and make money at the same time.

Until next time…..

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