Dr. Hubert Rampersad
Lack of engagement is endemic, and is causing large and small organizations all over the world to incur excess costs, under perform on critical tasks, and create widespread customer dissatisfaction. The annual financial loss in the US due to disengagement of managers and employees is about $300B US (Gallup Poll, 2005). Improving organizational performance requires a highly engaged and happy workforce. Research on happiness in the workplace suggests that worker well-being plays a major role in organizational performance and that there is a strong relationship between worker happiness and workplace engagement. Our own research indicates that no organization is free of the issue. But what is being done about it? This article entails some new and unique principles that will help organizations tread the above mentioned problems and the demanding and often frustrating road towards sustained employee engagement improvement and stress reduction. Remember what Charles Handy said: “The companies that survive longest are the ones that work out what they uniquely can give to the world not just through growth or money but their excellence, their respect for others, or their ability to make people happy. Some call those things a soul”.
Copyright ( 2006 The Gallup Organization, Princeton, NJ. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. Visit the Gallup Management Journal at http://gmj.gallup.com/
What ever happened to employee engagement?
Lack of engagement is endemic, and is causing large and small organizations all over the world to incur excess costs, under perform on critical tasks, and create widespread customer dissatisfaction. For example, in the Netherlands it is estimated that what we call mental absence, when the employee’s mind is elsewhere than at work, is costing $30,000 per employee per year.
It is the same story in the US. “The trend is disheartening”, said Optimize magazine in April 2005. “Since 1995, according to a new survey by The Conference Board, appreciably fewer Americans are satisfied with their work. And it's not just one or two facets of work that's making them cranky—pick a topic, and there's dissatisfaction. Take vacation policies. In 1995, 56% were satisfied. Ten years later, the figure is 51%. Satisfaction with physical facilities is down to 52% from 56%. Age and income don't matter either; the trend is all downward.” The average U.S. worker wastes more than two hours a day, and that's not including lunch, according to a new Web survey by America On-line and Salary.com. That means companies spend as much as $759-billion (U.S.) on salaries annually for which they receive no apparent benefit, the research found.” Our own research indicates that no organization is free of the issue. But what is being done about it? The premise of this article is that self-examination is the only road to sustaining employee engagement. In fact, it is the only road for gaining it in the first place.
Enter the Personal Balanced Scorecard
The Personal Balanced Scorecard (PBSC) is a new personal approach to non-work and work performance founded on self-examination. The thinking process and mind-set change that provide its basis are designed to prepare you for action and, just as important, for inner involvement in your work. The two together foster resolution, passion and energy. The underlying principle is quite straightforward. By writing down your PBSC, you put a mirror in front of you. As you acquire insights, you become more pro-active and self-assured, and find you will learn faster and think more clearly. The PBSC is a scorecard of your work and non-work, encompassing your personal mission, vision, key roles, critical success factors, objectives, performance measures, targets and improvement actions, divided along four perspectives:...