Every two weeks we bring you opinion, news and research on Employee Engagement, Leadership and Organisational Performance, along with some thoughts on practical workplace applications.

Editorial: 2018 – The Dawn of the Post-engagement Age?

We all know that employee engagement has been the buzz-word around businesses for the past five years plus, and the proven link between high engagement and higher productivity is really if ever disputed. A lot of time and energy has been invested in understanding employee engagement and in trying to raise it. Whilst there are some heart-warming stories of success, across the corporate world as a whole we’d have to say that no significant change has taken place. Employee engagement levels remain woefully low, and global productivity levels are barely shifting.

So what is to be done?

Perhaps it is time to recognise the need for a new era: the post engagement era. Einstein is attributed with the saying “Insanity is constantly repeating the same action and expecting a different result.” In too many case, businesses are focussed on the same repeated action, which has its focus on the individual’s engagement score, rather than on their whole workplace experience.

Our prediction is that the organisations that make the greatest leaps forward in 2018 will be those who shift their focus away from ‘employee engagement’ to ‘how can we transform our organisation’s workforce?’

Line managers will naturally play a key role in this, as they are the critical interface between employees and organisation. They will need support (perhaps from HR, but most importantly from senior leaders in the organisation) to offer their employees a workplace experience that truly enables them to be engaged and to deliver the required results.

There has of course been a lot we have learned, so let’s not throw the engagement baby out with the bath water; but let’s not continue to simply repeat the strategies of the past five + years that clearly haven’t been successful.

Steve Short – Emenex

Blog:  Making Successful New Year Transformations

It is again that time of year when many of us take a few minutes to step back from the whirlwind of our day-to-day and consider what are the wildly important things that we would like to change in this next year that will have a significant impact on the well-being of our lives.  Sadly, however, many of these initiatives, although full of good intentions, often lack the detailed planning rigour and accountability to ensure that they persist beyond a few weeks or even days.

So what can we learn from successful change management that we could apply to our New Year Transformations?  Read more.

Alistair Aitchison – Emenex

Let’s Change Our Perception Of Employee Engagement

So, if employee engagement yields so many great results (and the record shows that it does… Ed), why is corporate America (and the UK) failing miserably at it? The answer is deceptively simple: Too few are putting real money, time and effort behind it. Bottom line (pun intended): As you contemplate the future of your business, it’s worth rethinking how you and your company approach employee engagement.

Employee engagement is not a project, says Cha Tekeli writing for Forbes. It is not a workshop. It is not a new wellness program or a cool perk (though all that can contribute). It’s not one-size-fits-all. And it doesn’t have an end-date.

Employee engagement is really about individual appreciation. That doesn’t just mean rewarding individuals. It means appreciating employees for exactly who they are, not who you want them to be. Employee engagement programs are supposed to address this but too often don’t.

Why?  Go here for Tekeli’s comprehensive insights.

Engaging Environment Challenges Explained

Organisations that have good employee engagement generally thrive. What challenges, however, do organisations – and particularly their HR – face when striving to achieve high levels of engagement?

Convincing the CEO to commit

The place to start, says Nigel Purse writing for The HR Director, is with the business case for improving employee engagement – doing the research to ensure that you have the facts and figures linking employee engagement to the specific aspects of business performance that matter right now to your CEO and Board will reap big rewards.

However, to get action and change, you will also need to touch the CEO’s emotions and feelings. The Board and CEO may agree in theory that it makes economic sense to pay attention to employee engagement. After all, it is in their self-interest for sales, profit and share price to be moving in the right direction. But to move beyond theoretical support to a commitment to action, they need to be driven by their emotions. For CEOs, this often means tapping into their need for autonomy, reputation and legacy.

Further CEO insights here, plus building employee engagement into daily work.

As Work Evolves, Culture Has to Keep Up

Culture. Next to the term “employee engagement,” it’s one of the biggest buzzwords in business today. And, like employee engagement, workplace culture is undergoing a significant shift as companies hustle to stay ahead of a changing business environment.

From the #MeToo movement that’s pushing back against workplace cultures that allow sexual harassment to persist, to a gig economy that’s changing how we work, those tasked with shaping a business’ culture certainly have their work cut out for them. And that’s not to mention the demands created by constantly evolving technology, the need to compete globally, increased customer needs and new expectations from a young, vocal generation of workers.

So what are these forces with which you’ll have to contend? They’re sure to change by the day, but experts point to a few known variables that are influencing workplace culture right now: go to HR Dive.

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