A Gallup poll recently taken (State of Global Workplace) stated that 18% of the American workforce said they were ‘actively disengaged’ – which means that they ‘actively’ didn’t embrace what the organization, and their bosses, were trying to accomplish, and actually may undermine it.. A recent poll by Parade magazine found that 35% of the U.S. workforce would forgo a pay raise if they could see their boss fired. What causes such a lackadaisical and no-care attitude about work? Can it be changed?
Commitment to work stems from motivation and often leaders and managers don’t spend enough time with an employee to grasp the importance of their motivation. Here are some times when it is appropriate:
- Hiring an employee – asking the right questions to help the employee recognize why he wants to work here – the motivation and values
- Performance review time – taking the time to explore the career opportunities for an employee, being truthful about this, planning development opportunities to match the motivation.
- Granting authority, not just more responsibility – more decision-making authority in developmental assignments.
- Building a team successfully – work is relational, and employees expect to work harmoniously with others, and that their managers will care about their well-being.
We might also mention that disengagement can be considered for Board members also. How many non-profit Boards of Directors suffer from lack of engagement from their selected Board members? Again, it may stem from not taking the time to plumb the motivations of prospective Board members, who may have been pursued because they are a pillar in the community, or someone’s close friend. If we want involvement and commitment, it’s better to pursue the motivation and not just rely on prestige or friendship.
Many research findings have proved that employee engagement leads to better business results. Likewise, an involved Board of Directors can accomplish their mission if Board members become and stay engaged.
Author: Adrianne Geiger DuMond, Executive Coaches of Orange County, www.ECofOC.org