I am not happy.
And I don’t want to be.
I do a lot of work with organisations around employee engagement. When I initially meet with the business owners or senior leaders, I often hear the same thing. “We want our people to be happy.”
I get that you don’t want your people to be unhappy. I’m bought in to that idea. But is the aim here to make people happy? Isn’t that setting the bar a little low? How about Empowered? Challenged? Developing? Rewarded? Consulted? Wait – what if we could have all these things and more. What if our people were… Engaged?
Ok, so I’m labouring the point a little here.
We know that an engaged workforce brings numerous benefits to employees, business and their customers and that these benefits will continue to yield rewards the more engaged the workforce is.
Don’t make this mistake
A crucial first step that is often missed out when organisations embark upon an engagement strategy, is being clear about what engagement means; to the business and to its people.
Ask them. Talk with them. Educate them. Encourage them to explore the topic.
This is the first time we have known 5 generations in the workplace at once. 5 generations with different personal, professional, financial, social and wellbeing needs. Having an engagement strategy that communicates, consults and collaborates across the generations, that is available for people to opt in to, that meets their evolving needs around purpose and identity will help your people feel included, listened to and ultimately, engaged.
And yes, they may well be happy. But they won’t only be happy. They’ll be fulfilled, committed and have purpose. And for me, that beats happy.
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