Is your staff really engaged?

Justin Cooper Added over 4 years ago

Business Hug

Employees are the most important asset within a business – particularly within professional services - right? So why don’t we do more to engage with them?

‘Engaging for Success’ – a report produced in the UK in the midst of the GFC in 2009 - provided strong evidence that only organisations that truly engage and inspire their employees produce world class levels of innovation, productivity and performance.

But HR Magazine this week revealed that this message still isn’t getting through to enough CEOs and management teams. Too many managers still see engagement as a ‘nice-to-have’ initiative to keep staff happy – instead of being a key component of business profitability.

In my view the key challenge is more to do with management engagement rather than employee engagement. In other words it’s about getting the management team to engage with the fact that if they don’t create a clearly defined company culture and then ensure employees engage with this, then over time they will continually lose good staff.

As one individual in this report put it "Engagement is not something you do, it's about how the organisation is."

Companies that understand this imperative thrive – as evidenced by those companies tracked in the US on the ‘Firms of Endearment’ model – who performed ten times better than the top Fortune 500 companies. It’s not rocket science, but somehow too many companies still don’t get it.

We know intuitively that it’s the right thing to do – to treat our employees with humanity and provide them with a work environment where they feel valued and part of a community. But now there’s hard evidence to prove that this approach is far more profitable to the organisation.

So how do companies start the process of cultural engagement with staff? One of the easiest ways is to craft a compelling and authentic Brand Story that defines what, how and why they do what they do. It’s a transparent, easy-to-understand communication that acts as a rallying cry for the whole company. It states what the business stands for – and gives the staff a clear sense of the collective culture within which they are working.

As John Sculley put it: ‘The new corporate contract is that we will offer you an opportunity to express yourself and grow if you promise to leash yourself to our dream…at least for a while.”

But first you have to define that dream…



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Posted by Justin Cooper at 8:49 am 0 Comments

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