AVOID THE EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT TRAP


EMPLOYEE ENG

Engaged employees work harder, produce more, lead happier and more fulfilled lives, and create better societies. They thrive at work, at home, and in life. Lucky for your employees, you’re sophisticated enough to grasp this, and evolved enough to want to create it for them.

Actually, that may not be so lucky for them, or for you. Your perspective on employee engagement creates a trap, and it’s one into which many of your fellow illuminati are falling. Ironically, it’s caused primarily by your increased attention to engagement relative to your less evolved peers.

Those lesser managers just don’t care if their employees are engaged or not. Some of them don’t even know it! They stumble through their management careers under the misconception that if the employees aren’t happy, it’s the employees’ problem. Employees can quit if they want to, and be replaced. The unenlightened have no grasp of the hard and soft costs of disengagement.

They’re wrong, of course, and that’s how the trap is set: If what they’re doing is wrong, the opposite of what they’re doing must be right. So if not knowing or caring whether your employees are engaged is wrong, then taking full responsibility for your employees’ engagement must be right.

They stumble through their management careers under the misconception that if the employees aren’t happy, it’s the employees’ problem. 

And so, in proper highly-evolved form, you take ownership. You ask employees, in person and via survey, whether they’re engaged and joyful at work. On its face, it’s a reasonable line of questioning: “How well are we doing at keeping you engaged, and how can we do better?”

The trap slams shut. You’ve just notified you’re employees that it’s your job to keep them happy. They respond with a list of demands. They can’t be happy until they’re given higher salary, greater responsibility, a more impressive title, a view, and a bean bag chair. But there are only so many raises to go around, so many projects to do and titles to have, and so many square feet in which to pile the bean bags. So you find yourself negotiating: Give Penny the promotion, Tammy the Title, and William the window. And have HR announce that bean bags pose a trip hazard.

Suddenly, nobody’s happy. You’ve failed at employee engagement, because you can’t give them what they want.

But where did it all go wrong? Was it overly demanding employees, scarce salary budgets, or draconian job title guidelines?

The trap slams shut. You’ve just notified you’re employees that it’s your job to keep them happy.

Sorry, but it was you. No matter how well-meaning you are, “I’ll make you happy” is a recipe for disaster, at work and in teen romance. When you try to take responsibility for another person’s happiness, you create a dysfunctional, dependent relationship.

Avoid the trap. Attend to engagement without promising happiness. Build an environment that allows people to grow without putting yourself in the role of Santa Claus. Tell employees it’s up to them to find their own engagement, and up to you to encourage and support them in doing so. Be honest about what needs to get done for your team to succeed, and the fact that it won’t all be fun. And teach employees to troubleshoot their own engagement issues. Help them to work toward what they most enjoy even as they perform their jobs well today.

As your employees improve at their current jobs, they’ll have more options and directions in which to grow. As they learn to troubleshoot engagement problems and recognize what they enjoy, they’ll move into work that engages them at a higher level. Over time, the entire system will evolve toward greater employee engagement, and attract even more talent. In the process, it will thrive.

No matter how well-meaning you are, “I’ll make you happy” is a recipe for disaster, at work and in teen romance.

That’s engagement done right. It’s exciting, it’s positive, it attracts and retains great employees, and it builds community through productivity. And, it’s better than a giant pile of bean bag chairs.

ENGAGEMENT 1

Curated by Trevor Lee

http://www.ep-i.net

@trevorblee

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When You Really Need a Favour, Ask in Person


When you want to ask your colleagues for a favour to review your draft presentation, lend some resources to an important project, or even to support you in your local charity run — it feels most efficient to send a group email.

But a new study finds that people tend to overestimate the power of their persuasiveness over text and email and underestimate how effective face-to-face requests are.

Asking someone in person is far more likely to be successful.

Remember that most people have an inbox full of requests from people. You don’t want your favour to get lost in that heap. Sure, going to talk to someone may be less convenient and more uncomfortable, but if you really need someone to help you out, stop by their desk or schedule a meeting.

Doing so demonstrates the importance of the task and cuts through the digital clutter.

Adapted from “A Face-to-Face Request Is 34 Times More Successful than an Email,” by Vanessa K. Bohns

 

FAV 2

Curated by Trevor Lee

https://www.linkedin.com/in/trevorblee

http://www.ep-i.net

@trevorblee

Leadership Presence


Increasing your Leadership Presence involves complex, interrelated factors.

  1. Identify and clarify your vision of the future, not only for yourself but for those you lead, or want to lead. Document your vision (in writing!) and then communicate it in a way that inspires people to follow it.

  2. Consider how you appear to others. Start with your appearance, but give more than a passing glance at your inner self and soul (or whatever you call that intangible part of you that projects your values.) Do something to improve at least one of the above, every day.

  3. Get some practice in leaving decisions to other people, especially to those who really want to contribute in the way that decision-making requires. (This sounds easier than it is. People who want to lead generally like to be in control.)

Leadership Presence is a path, not a destination.

LEADERSHIP PRES 1

Curated by Trevor Lee
tblee@ep-i.net
http://www.ep-i.net
@trevorblee

 

Six Attributes of Collaborative Leaders


These 6 attributes may not be the familiar leadership competences taught at many business schools but it is my belief that they underpin success in today’s collaborative world.

1. Patience
The terrain will change, but collaborative leaders are patient with their partners and with themselves. Your direction may be clear, but you will need a flexible approach to getting there and accept that this will take time.

2. Collective decision making
Decisions made by leaders in isolation and enforced by hierarchical power aren’t sustainable in today’s world. Inclusive decision making informed by bottom up data is key.

3. Quick thinking
You need to be able to see both opportunities and risks before others do, and act in response to them. This requires a quick intellect, and the confidence and courage to implement new ideas whilst taking people with you.

4. Tenacity
The world we describe isn’t a stable one. Governments come and go; dramatic events happen, you cannot produce a detailed plan of action and expect to see it through step by step. Successful collaborative leaders are tenacious in the pursuit of results that deliver the overall common purpose.

5. Building relationships
Collaborative leaders go out to find future partners, identify sponsors, make new alliances – and are prepared to do all this in unexpected places. They invest energy in doing this sort of networking activity ahead of time, so they can call on these relationships when the pressure is on.

6. Handling conflict
Interdependent relationships are multi-layered and always contain seeds of possible conflict. Collaborative leaders don’t see conflict as a mark of failure – rather it is part of the territory, and they are confident in holding the difficult but necessary conversations that help to bring about a resolution.

COLLABORATIVE LEADERSHIP 1

Trevor Lee

http://www.ep-i.net

http://www.ceo-worldwide.com

@trevorblee

Don’t Accept a Job Offer Until You Assess the Organizational Culture.


You got the job. Now for the hard part: deciding whether to take it.

Start by doing due diligence on the organization and its people to learn whether you would enjoy working there.

Ask yourself, “Is this a place where I will be happy? Where I will be challenged? Where I will thrive?”

Reaching out to your contacts and LinkedIn network and ask questions such as “What is the organization like?” and “How long do people stay?”

Find out what happened to the last person who had the job you’ve been offered.

If you can, do a trial run at the company. You can say, “I really want to learn more about this organization. Can I spend a few hours with the team?”

You will not be able to negotiate or change the organization’s culture, of course, but it’s helpful to know beforehand what you’re getting into.

CULTURE 2

Curated by Trevor Lee

https://www.linkedin.com/in/trevorblee

http://www.ep-i.net

http://www.ceo-worldwide.com

@trevorblee

To Motivate Your Employees …


It’s not always easy to get the most from your employees.

If you’re struggling to inspire the people on your team, look to your past.

Think about your own experience and what motivated you when you were in the lower levels of a company.

Who was the best boss you ever had?

What did that person do to make you want to perform at your best?

Reflect on what made your boss’s motivational strategies so effective for you.

What specifically did they do to earn your trust and admiration?

Now think about how you can apply those lessons to your own team. Which motivational tools will work for them?

Be fearless in examining your own behavior and curious about how your employees respond to you. Re-purpose your favorite boss’s techniques and make them your own.

Adapted from “Motivating People Starts with Having the Right Attitude,” by Monique Valcour

MOTIVATE 1

Curated by Trevor Lee

@trevorblee

http://www.ep-i.net

http://www.ceo-worldwide.com

Lose your EGO to become a LEADER


We all know leaders need to do a lot of things. Have a clear vision is just one of many things being discussed. I couldn’t agree more, but the key is to keep it simple and focus on what we can do as leaders, to make it about the people and be the best example we can be.

It all starts with losing the ego. When we eliminate ego, we can become “a part of” instead of “apart from”. This is crucial in developing trust with your employees. Most people want someone who treats them like they matter and makes them feel “a part of” the team. The following LEADERSHIP acronym has some suggestions and principles to practice, that can help eliminate ego or at least reduce it some.

Listen.

This is our best assessment tool. Listen to your employees or people in general. Everyone has a voice and deserves to be heard. Ask questions and really listen. Look at yourself first. If you are asking others to do something or act a certain way, make sure you are doing it as well. Learn from others. Everyone is capable of teaching us something.

Engage.

Employee engagement has been a popular topic recently. Leaders need to engage with their employees. Be interested. Take a minute when you can and let them know you care. Be an Example. Always.

Assess.

Asses every situation, all issues, obstacles and opportunities. Take appropriate Action based on your assessments.

Develop.

Develop new leaders. This is a must. We need more quality leaders. Be a mentor and show others how it is done. Make good and timely Decisions. Above all else, make a Difference.

Encourage.

Encourage others. It means a lot to be encouraged by a leader. This also sets a good example for other employees to encourage each other. Have Enthusiasm. Show your followers (employees) you are excited about your job as a leader.

Respect.

Show respect for all your employees and staff. They all deserve it, from the CEO to the maintenance person. Recognize and Reward others for their efforts. Be Responsible. Always.

Serve.

Leaders must Serve others. It is not about you. It is about them. Put them first and they will follow you. Always try and Smile and keep a positive attitude. Share your knowledge with everyone.

Help.

Help out when you can. A Hands-on leader will be more liked and respected. Be Honest and practice Humility.

Inspire and Influence others.

As a leader, you can make a huge difference in the lives of others. Believe in them. Give them Hope.

Lead with Passion and a Purpose.

People can tell when you have it and when you don’t. Plan. You have all heard it. When you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Be Prepared for anything. You just never know. Put others first. Always.

These two don’t fit with the acronym, but they are very crucial for leaders. Practice Gratitude and be Optimistic. If we continue to practice the basics, we will not have to “get back to them.”

If we as leaders practice these basic and simple principles, the rest will come a lot easier, your employees will be more likely to “follow the Leader” and the future of leadership will continue to shine brightly

Remember, with ego you are “apart from.” Lose the ego and be “a part of”. It’s a beautiful thing.

 

What do you think ?

EGO 2

Curated by Trevor Lee

https://www.linkedin.com/in/trevorblee

http://www.ep-i.net

http://www.ceo-worldwide.com

@trevorblee