Is Employee Engagement that Important?
“To win in a market place you must first win in the workplace’’, Doug Conant former Campbell’s soup CEO once said. Study after study turns up numbers in the range of 70 to 80% of the workforce that’s either not fully engaged or actively disengaged at work, costing companies billions in annual turnover. The impact isn’t just on the individual; the organization loses out in multiple ways. The most obvious is the lost productivity and discretionary effort of those who are doing just what they have to do to get by but actively disengaged employees can also have a negative influence on other employees and push customers away. Turnover, quality, safety, profitability, the list of costs goes on and on. However, just as marketing and product teams have moved beyond customer satisfaction to look at total customer experience, successful companies are refocusing their efforts on improving the entire employee experience. What do 93% of the top 100 Fortune 500 listed companies KNOW that the other 7% don’t? Here are their top 5 secrets…
01. Know Yourself-Know Your Employee
Today’s business environment requires learning dynamics that promote high employee engagement and Whole Brain Thinking skills that drive results. Leaders Know their employees ” their preferences, skills, expectations and job needs, they know how to encourage their best thinking, they embrace employee diversity, and they recognize and align employee strengths, talents and needs with the organization’s objectives. There’s no one-size-fits-all management approach to engaging and inspiring employees, but Whole Brain® Thinking gives leaders practical tools to diagnose and adjust their approaches as necessary. It makes it easy for them to keep the lines of communication open so employee engagement becomes a daily focus. Not a stop-gap, crisis management issue.
If you want an innovative organization, you need to hire, work with, and promote people who make you uncomfortable. You need to understand your own preferences so that you can complement your weaknesses and exploit your strengths. In a cognitively diverse environment, a message sent is not necessarily a message received. Some people respond well to facts, figures, and statistics. Others prefer anecdotes. Still others digest graphic presentations most easily. Information must be delivered in the preferred “language’’ of the recipient.
02. Don’t Just Engage… Enable!
Employee engagement is only half the story. It’s no good feeling great about your job if you can’t get things done. That’s why it’s important for employees to be “enabled” too. Because if enthusiastic people are held back by bureaucracy, systems or conflicting demands, not only will they underperform – they may stop trying, or even leave.
Hay Group Insight has found enabling of employees embraces two key components. The first is an optimized role which requires employees to be effectively matched to their jobs, so that their skills and abilities are effectively utilized. The second is a supportive environment, which provides people with the resources they need (for example, time, information, tools and equipment) and removes barriers from getting the job done (such as red tape, or tasks that don’t add value). By considering both employee engagement and employee enablement, research by Hay Group Insight suggests that there are four distinct groups of employees within a typical organisation. (Figure 1)
03. Inspire and Be Inspired!
Truly engaged workplaces are rare. Gallup research shows that worldwide, just 13% of employees are engaged in their jobs -they are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace. The remaining 87% of employees are either not engaged or indifferent – or even worse, actively disengaged and potentially hostile to their organizations.
Southwest Airlines is a company who encourages employees to stay inspired to do things differently, from allowing existing employees from various departments to design their own uniform and giving them autonomy over aspects of their work life they’d never normally get a say in, to becoming a glowing example of customer service due to their collective of happy, committed employees.
04. Improve The Employee Experience
Understanding and improving the employee experience is critical for companies operating in a highly competitive global economy, giving employees the space to boost their creativity to make them feel that they are more than just the work they do for the company, will help companies succeed in attracting and retaining skilled employees. Employee engagement doesn’t not mean employee happiness nor does it mean employee satisfaction, many companies have satisfaction surveys but the bar is set too low, and often are gone without follow-up. Employee engagement is the emotional commitment the employee has to the organization and its goals. DreamWorks Animation host company parties after big projects are completed; a practice that employees really appreciate is that at such parties and events. They are encouraged to share their personal work and projects with their co-workers. This opens up an appreciation of non-work related projects, it keeps people feeling both in control and passionate about their work.
05. Reward Them For Better Or For Worse
Managers should understand what it is that their employees truly value and focus on improving these, even if and especially when) financial rewards are being squeezed. Employers may be less concerned about employees leaving them during a downturn. However, when good times return, disengaged employees are more likely to jump ship at the first opportunity, just when recovery for the firm becomes possible. Conversely, when employers adopt a long-term view of engaging their employees during a downturn, they will be rewarded with increased loyalty and motivation when the next wave of growth arrives. When employees are engaged-when they care, they use discretionary effort. In Drive, Dan Pink goes on to illustrate why the traditional carrots-and-sticks paradigm of extrinsic reward and punishment doesn’t work, pointing instead to his trifecta of intrinsic motivators: Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose.
Co-founder, Impact Lebanon
Raya is a tech professional working in business development & strategy at Apple, based out of London. She previously held two roles at Facebook; the first in Austin, Texas where she managed $80M/year of advertising sales for small and medium businesses; the second as a partner manager for media creators and sports partners in London.
In parallel to her work, Raya is a co-founder and one of partnerships lead of Impact Lebanon, a non-profit organisation that spearheads various initiatives, from socio-economical to welfare to environmental, in order to drive real impact in Lebanon. Raya is passionate about all things tech, innovation, & women empowerment, and is a strong believer of ‘leaning into the question mark’ – stretching boundaries and jumping into the unknown.
Channel Manager, Qlearsite
Ope Taiwo began her career at Gartner, witnessing first-hand the potential for Qlearsite to impact the working lives of clients. Following Qlearsite’s receipt of the Gartner Cool Vendor award for their impressive work in the Employee Engagement space. Ope joined the team with a determination to raise awareness for Qlearsite, who developed an analytics platform that analyses free-text comments in addition to quantitative feedback.
As Channel Manager, Ope is responsible for building and managing a strategic partner network that will take Qlearsite’s offering to market. Thus, enabling leaders to look beyond the quantitative metrics traditionally associated with Engagement measurements, and listen to the experiences, feelings, and sense of Inclusivity in the workplace.
Digital Transformation Consultant, TTM Associates
Mohammad Subuh is a Digital Transformation and IT Governance (GRC) Specialist with over 12 years of experience. He has worked in the consulting field for four years with one of the big four consulting firms in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). Prior to that he worked as an IT Strategy and Governance Specialist for 8 years at The Housing Bank, Jordan.
During his years of experience, Mohammad contributed in a number of strategic projects derived from the Vision 2030 of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, where he participated in the establishment of the Vision Realisation Offices (VROs) in many government entities within Saudi. There he played different roles within Strategic Alignment, Project Management, Performance Management and Quality Management.
He also participated in a number of projects related to e-Government Transformation and IT consulting. He led the IT Governance Stream to implement the IT Governance Framework as part of the e-Government Transformation project as well as in leading the process of preparing and delivering the necessary materials for an eGovernment Transformation Audit. Additionally, he led an IT Policies and Processes Standardization project according to best practices of ITIL, COBIT and CMMI and IT Benchmarking.
Moreover, Mohammad participated in several projects related to automation and performance enhancement, where he participated in a Change Management Project to implement an ITIL based automated Service Management System. He was also responsible for the IT Vendors Management and IT Financial Management, as well as managing the IT policies and procedures governance.
His experience is focused on the Public Sector, Banking & Finance, Retail, Transportation and Logistics sectors.
He has an MSc. Digital innovation (UK), MBA (UK), BSc. IT (Jordan), and he is also certified in Certified Business Analysis Practice (CBAP).
Bonnie Hagemann is the CEO of EDA, Inc., a top-of-the-house consulting firm known around the world for its C-Suite capabilities in executive development and research. Shifting to advancing the state of the industry rather than one company at a time, EDA is currently taking its’ 37-year history as a thought leader in the space and using it to create a powerful HR Tech platform called SurveySaurus, designed to make culture visible to the leaders, the board and the investors. Bonnie, personally, is a published and well-known leadership strategist who advises public and large company CEOs and is often called upon as a subject matter expert for the media including Fast Company, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, US News and World Report and many more.
President,TEAM Performance Inc.
Ellen Robinson, President of TEAM Performance, works with forward-thinking leaders who want to bring their best selves to work and life. Her focus is on creating workplace programs that get results by improving productivity, trust, teamwork, communication effectiveness, and productive conflict. For the last 33 years she has worked with small business owners, Fortune 500 companies, non-profit organizations, consultants, governmental agencies, and utility companies. Ellen holds a marketing degree from The University of Texas at Austin. She has numerous certifications around trust-building, Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team, culture change and leadership development.
As a Certified Barrett Consultant and Trainer, Ellen has certified over 450 individuals globally since 2005 and is the longest-tenured consultant in the virtual platform.
Thomas Orths is an expert in Leadership Effectiveness, Holistic Change and Emotional Intelligence. As a high-performance coach, trainer and speaker, he enables individuals, teams and organizations to grow. His ability to initiate Mind-set Change is in demand to create High Performing Teams in the competitive business arena.
With the experience of Thomas, growth becomes possible by using successful strategies that enable you to increase sales, to optimize productivity, improve customer service and work more efficiently. His core competencies include leadership & management effectiveness, holistic change, emotional intelligence & mind-set change and high performing individuals & teams.
Thomas has previous industry experience in Aerospace, Chemicals, Communications, Creative Industries, Electronics, Financial Services, Food and Drink, IT, Manufacturing, Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology and Finance.
His qualifications include accreditation for DISC behaviour related assessment tools focusing on leadership & team development and assessment instruments of emotional intelligence on the individual, team and organizational level through JCA, Cheltenham UK.(John Cooper &Associates)
Thomas has worked with many international clients. Some of these are Bayer, British Airways, Gen Re Reinsurance, Goodyear Dunlop Europe, Hilton Hotels, Hitachi, Holiday Inn Hotels, Janssen Cilag, Johnson & Johnson, McDonald’s. He has also worked with Saudi General Entertainment Authority, Takamol Holdings, Saudi Telecom Company and Bank Al Bilad just to name a few.
Consultant ,TTM Associates
A professionally qualified and experienced HR specialist with extensive knowledge and skills in management and organisational development. I have more than 20 years’ experience in managing human resource and development projects in large commercial and public sector organisations, in the United Kingdom and abroad. In addition, I have experience of chairing a successful charitable trust for more than twelve years.
PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS AND INSTITUTE MEMBERSHIP
Managing Partner Europe,TTM Associates
Jean-Luc Kastner, PhD, is a focused Consultant in Strategic Management Marketing, Sales and he has developed and structured a network of International Consultants specialized in business management and reengineering. Jean-Luc is currently a TTM Managing partner based in France. He has developed a comprehensive Sales and Marketing Management Model based on more then 25 years of Industrial research with the Herrmann Institute.
Within the last five years, he has been instrumental in large skill development programs with companies such as: Reuters and Philip Morris Kazakhstan amongst other organizations. Tyco Healthcare, Data logic, Bayer and Vodafone Greece have all redesigned their sales approach with Jean-Luc’s advice and support.
Jean-Luc is a typical “non-academic”; his experience was gained “on the job” in several management roles in blue chip organisations such as HP, Boston Scientific and Fresenius where he managed the International Sales and Marketing Operations and had to lead a crucial change management program: the shift from transactional product focused Sales to Consultative, Value based Sales. Jean-Luc is currently involved in One to One management coaching projects at General Manager and VP level in the B2B Industry, and works in English, German and French. In the last three years he has been focusing on the EMEA market and has a good understanding of the Middle East & Gulf cultures. His Academic titles ( Engineering PhD – ENIM) enables him to teach within a number of Governmental programs in France and abroad. Jean-Luc is and accredited FFCP Professional Coach and Herrmann International.
General Manager, Solutions & Operations Senior Consultant,TTM Associates
Abdullah is an expert in developing and implementing Human Capital Strategy and Talent Management activities in complex environments with diverse individuals.
Originally from the UK, Abdullah began his career working in British Telecom on customer retention and sales programs before being promoted into sales management. Abdullah transitioned into People Development & Training leading the development and implementation of front line and people management training across 1,500 employees.
His career then moved into a start-up telecoms business before accepting a new position in Savola Group in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. During his career in Savola, Abdullah held a number of senior HR roles across talent management, recruitment, organizational design, compensation and employee relations. In addition he worked across Saudi, Egypt, North West Africa and Turkey. Abdullah was appointed as GM of HR for a large industrial conglomerate before being headhunted as the Director of HR for a multi-national pharmaceutical company.
Consequently, Abdullah has unique ‘hands on’ experience of building and delivering results in multinational and family owned companies in the sectors of Construction, Engineering, Retail, Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical, Telecoms and Transportation.
He has a Diploma in Business Admin and in Strategic Management & Leadership and he is certified in Strategic Human Resources Management.
Principal Consultant, Director MENA & Turkey,TTM Associates
Dr. Magdi Ismail currently lives in Cyprus where he manages the TTM associates MENA & Turkey office and commute between, Dubai, Istanbul and London. Magdi resided in Egypt & Saudi Arabia and works across many countries, including, UK, Belgium, France, Turkey, Greece, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
He studied pharmaceuticals sciences and commenced his entrepreneurship adventures in the early 90s, while he was still studying in the Faculty of Pharmacy. Magdi started his practical life early when still a student he opened his retail pharmacy in order to secure a good future for himself.
Magdi’s career thereafter focused on the fields of strategy, marketing, sales and customer management in the pharmaceutical industry. For the past 20 years he followed his career development in various international companies, including (Rhone Poulenc (Sanofi-Aventis), and Organon NV in the Middle East. During this period, he got the experience of launching and marketing many products in the Middle East. Also Magdi combines pragmatic knowledge and experience of managing and doing business in the Middle East, while at the same time he has the awareness and understanding of the international business culture. He currently consults global organizations in the Eastern Mediterranean countries on Time to Market, Strategy Formulation and Implementation, Customer Management and Portfolio Management. Magdi is a subject-matter expert and a consultant for TMC and he currently manages the TTM associates regional office in the Middle East.
He holds degrees in Pharmaceutical Sciences and an MBA from Henley Management School, UK. Magdi also is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a certified practitioner for the Herrmann Brain Dominant Instrument, France. Magdi is married and has 4 children, 2 girls and 2 boys. He enjoys reading about history and cultural differences and he likes playing soccer and squash.