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: Transformational Change – Does It Really Matter?

There’s nothing new about change. For as long as I can remember the old mantra ‘the only constant is change’ has rung out. But more recently (perhaps over the past couple of years) the concept of change has had ‘transformational’ added to it. What causes a change to result in ‘business transformation’? Does it matter, or is this just another phrase from the ‘International Dictionary of Managerese’?

It doesn’t matter, and it does matter…

It doesn’t matter when the phrase is simply used to make something routine and mundane sound important. In essence, it doesn’t make any difference to an organisation that is simply doing the same old thing, but just doing it more efficiently – quicker, cheaper, with better quality etc. and giving it a snazzy name.

It does matter if an organisation either fundamentally changes what is does, or fundamentally changes how it does what it does (or, even better, a combination of the two).

A good example here is Netflix. Their fundamental shift in how it delivers its service was to move from posting DVDs to customers to streaming films direct to customers’ TVs. They also created a totally new strategy, by not only curating and distributing content made by others, but by creating their own films and TV shows. The result? A business with revenues in excess of $6bn and a customer base in almost 200 countries.

Do we believe that business transformation matters? Yes we do – but it only happens when the organisation is willing to make some radical – transformational – shifts not only in its thinking but also in its practice.

Steve Short – Emenex

Blog: Timing is Everything

May and Sturgeon’s Referendum standoff or visitors to London mown down on Westminster bridge. The news is full of situations where timing is critical. So it is with many other aspects of our lives.Image result for may and sturgeon

For anyone who is a golfer, tennis player, rower or involved in any number of sports and physical activities split-second timing is what differentiates high from mediocre performance.

So it is in our engagement of employees within the workplace. One of the major criticisms of employees about their organisation’s efforts to listen to their concerns is the lack of, or poor timing of, a response.

In our experience it doesn’t need to be this way.  Read more.

Alistair Aitchison – Emenex

Amy Armstrong: What’s Wrong With Engagement?

Engagement has been part of most board agendas for over a decade now and the topic continues to garner significant interest in both the academic and business communities. If you type ‘employee engagement’ into Google for example, it yields over 26 million results. There has been over 25 years of academic research resulting in over 2000 studies on the topic. Yet, were still not getting it right.
Writing for HR Review, Dr Armstrong (Hult International Business School) suggests that there are three key reasons why we are getting engagement wrong, based upon her research for the movement, Engage for Success.

Can’t Get No Satisfaction? How Poor Employee Engagement Dislocates Your Business

The failure of many UK Chief Executives and Managing Directors to engage and communicate effectively with employees is negatively impacting staff satisfaction and motivation, according to new UK research.
Employees want to share ideas, interact with colleagues and recognise good work at every level of the business, but senior leaders are disconnected from valuable, two-way staff communication.  Furthermore, when asked how to describe the senior people in their organisation, only 42% of employees find them friendly, while a tiny 16% believe they are inspiring, highlighting a clear need to change.

This disconnect is having a direct impact on job satisfaction, and with only 10% of employees fully satisfied with their organisation there are clear signs that businesses need to improve in several areas – notably employee morale and recognition.

The Chartered Management Institute has published this report and its suggestions here.

The Four Enablers of Employee Engagement

Cathy Brown, Director at Engage for Success, discusses the four factors that are present in high performing organisations with highly engaged employees.

An always timely reminder: that we all get more out of going to work if the organisations we work for have an engaging culture, a philosophy that there is a ‘better way to work’. Research shows that engaging organisations are more productive, have healthier, happier staff, fewer accidents, higher profits and better customer service.

There are four, enduring factors (Enablers) that are present in high performing organisations with highly engaged employees.  Cathy’s expands upon them here.

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