With This Ring – Employee Engagement

How engaged or entangled are you at home or at work? A related question is “How committed are you to living your life as fully as possible wherever you are?” Both questions are important to seriously ponder. Your answers make a difference and determine your productivity regarding anything you are doing, your physical and mental health, and your enjoyment of life. Engagement, entanglement and commitment are indicators of your level of intention to proactively manage your life and/or business.

The Big Book of HR gives these statistics from The Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) that employees fall into three categories:

  • 17% -- Are actively disengaged, busy acting out their unhappiness and undermining what the organization is trying to accomplish.
  • 54% -- Are disengaged, “sleepwalking” through their day and putting time, not passion, into work.
  • 29% -- Are engaged, working with passion and feeling a real connection to the organization.

Disengagement costs the U.S. economy approximately $300 billion in lost productivity annually.

I expect these percentages can be similar to what we would find in how people in general live their lives. And I am very sad to say, the percentages would be much worse regarding our current political world and government. So, what can you and I do? Here are some areas to place your intentional attention:

Communication: This is not a new topic. Many of my articles include statements of the importance of communication. We cannot overemphasize, at work or at home, that open, direct, truthful and timely communication is an absolute must, in personal and professional relationships. If we want to be fully engaged and entangled, we must pay attention to communication. This means no hiding, no holding back, no lies and being totally open to the good, beautiful, challenging and ugly. You and I need to learn to communicate to the utmost depth of our ability! Speak the truth about what is really going on, no matter what. Truth sets us free.

Involvement: Awareness and involvement go hand in hand to get people interested and excited about belonging. From there pride, passion and ownership can be cultivated and created. Involvement happens at deeper levels within person- to-person sharing of questions, making decisions and working as a team.

Having fun: Humor, laughter and playfulness are great catalytic elements of engagement and entanglement. Often we get stuck in seriousness with a frown on our face. Smiles and giggles are great additions to even the most challenging of topics. Consider the word entangle. It is a fun word. Remember the game Twister? It’s a good image of entanglement. Entanglement can include difficulties and challenging situations. And in those involvements there typically is both conflict and humor where we recognize a larger spectrum of being human with each other.

Gatherings: Team events to include learning, celebrations and sports can tremendously enhance engagement.

This is only a start regarding ways to build employee or family engagement. Check out chapter fourteen of the Mitchell and Gamlem – “The Big Book of HR.” You will find many more ideas and insights.

Bernie Linnartz, of Empowerment Experts,

Consultant, coach & facilitator

This article was first published in the Taos News on April 14, 2016

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