“Our engagement scores are low [read “appalling”].
Our quarterly results are suffering.
We need you to come in and get people engaged.”
… says the MD.
So, we do what we do best. We zoom about the organisation, with energy and love, compelling people to find their better selves; we throw them a few tools while we’re at it. We work side-by-side with leaders and teams, uncovering reality and working on “so, what can we do about it?”
Meantime, back at HQ (Exec level), the top team continue to run things, business as usual for an end of quarter where pressure is peaking…
- ‘driving’ sales in through extra sales meetings, to report on progress
- designing a new initiative to motivate the sales force to sell product X or solution Y
- agreeing on investment in a new system to improve delivery, over the next 4 years
Hang on. Let’s look at that through a different lens, are they…
- wasting their sales peoples’ time and adding to the pressure?
- distracting sales with short term incentives, while jeopardising the bigger sale and the longer term relationship?
- adding complexity to the system, increasing people’s frustration with the one that’s still broken?
But, it’s OK. The people are still keen! They’ve been given new tools, they’ve re-discovered their passion for the business, and connected with their colleagues in more meaningful ways.
They’re actually collaborating,
and things seems to be getting better.
“This stuff is great”, they say.
“I just wondered, what are you doing with the Exec team? We can’t really see any change there…”
FAST FORWARD 6 MONTHS
I’ll let you guess what happened to engagement…
…there’s only so much time and effort you’ll give to caring more about the company you work for than you perceive your Executive leaders do.
You see, it’s reflected in their action and inaction.
And what about that engagement score – the one we pursue year on year?
The one that gives us responses like:
“Not answering this – I told you last year.”
If you want a better engagement score, flush your sugar pills.
Show them you’re engaged.
Read what they wrote last year
and do something about it.
Author: Alison West