Engaging Employees to Succeed at What? Integrity?
As I work with leaders on engaging employees, I’m always interested in how others are defining it and doing it. Today I read David Zinger’s definition: Employee Engagement: Good work, done well, with others, every day.
At the same time I’m reading about Toyota’s and GM’s car safety issues and wonder if the employees thought they were engaged in good work done well. Most likely the answer is yes. Hence the confusion with employee engagement.
When leaders approach me about engaging employees, I ask them, engage employees to do what? Get the job done? Follow the leaders? Engage each other for company-wide success? Each answer leads to different results.
Engaging Employees: Culture of Accountability & Integrity
As the new CEO of GM fields questions about why the corporation didn’t fix known safety issues, she has focused on the problem of silos that stopped communication. However …
Supposedly at GM, departments that were aware of the trouble with ignition switches didn’t tell the engineering teams. Why not? Why wouldn’t they feel absolutely compelled to inform others who could solve the problem? Silos don’t explain this. Their cultural definition of employee engagement does.
Clearly, GM’s definition of engaging employees was limited to meeting department goals. The engagement culture was not one of company-wide accountability to protect customers and GM’s good name. What was missing?
The simple question that wasn’t on everyone’s mind …Image licensed from Istock.com
Even established core values like the following don’t compel people to engage each other throughout a company.Image licensed from Istock.com
Employees likely think of core values as applying to their own work not necessarily as calling them to engage each other for company success. Most core values lack this call to action.
Leaders, you can fill this gap by asking the following two questions consistently with your teams:
- Who does this issue impact?
- Who all needs to know?
If you want employees to do good work, done well, with others, every day, as David Zinger proposes, then live, model, and illustrate the phrase “with others”.
You will effectively develop a culture accountability and integrity that engages employees to engage each other. It will remove the communication challenges that silos create.
From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™
©2014 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email email@example.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.
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