- Clarity around the purpose of their work (Why am I doing this?)
A bad example to prove the need: A senior IT leader is trying to explain some system issues to the business sponsor. The sponsor says "Did I ask you what was wrong? Did I ask for your advice? Just make the change I told you to make. " This type of conversation is not uncommon. In our crazed addiction to juggling multiple tasks, projects and work, we have little time to listen to each other. The outcome? Impulsive decisions which drive irritating rework down the road and destroy collaboration between the people involved going forward. It's very expensive and very unnecessary.
- Ability to measure and make an impact
A bad example to prove the need: A company was struggling with very low engagement numbers in their annual survey. They knew they had already lost some good people to other companies. To raise engagement scores, they pulled people out of their work for Happy Hours. Months later, when they re-distributed the survey, the engagement had gone DOWN. Turns out, Happy Hour was just another task added to an already overloaded day for most employees. The next step was to run the TTI Success Insights Stress Quotient, which measures the actual components causing the stress. The results? People were overworked and the organization was under stress. They were fine with each other (so Happy Hour was not needed) but they were tired and frustrated. The company acknowledged the need to the employees and hired more people. The engagement scores went up.
Look at the questions on your engagement survey and see if they are answering the questions you need answered. Are you asking questions like this? What if you asked people to rate the following statements from 1 Not True to 9 True:
- I clearly understand why I do the work that I do and what purpose it serves in the organization.
- My daily work allows me to makes a positive impact on this organization.
The responsibility of each individual is to be an equal player in any discussion around engagement. He or she gets to choose whether to be engaged or not. It is a choice, not a virus. Each employee is responsible for stating clearly to his or her manager what is needed to meet these two goals for them. Sure, the manager should be asking but if not, each individual has the right and responsibility to ask. If you want to be promoted, do more good than others, then ask for the promotion explaining why you are the best candidate. Choose your path.