The Importance of Employee Engagement

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Change is a constant in today´s modern business activity. As Harvard Business School Professor John Kotter wrote in Fujitsu´s `Fit for Change´ report, “the current rate of change within businesses is faster than the rate at which organisations are improving…many organisations just can 't keep up with the speed of change.” (www.theinformationdaily.com, 2012). This more and more complex and competitive environment inflicts a greater pressure on the employees; given that the employees are the heart of organisations not approaching them appropriately is one of the main reasons of corporate failure (Argenti, 2009). Although there is not a lot of research done in this field as it is a relatively new concept (Saks, 2006), understanding the importance of employee engagement and implementing a well-developed internal communications plan is crucial for success, especially during change (Dolphin, 1999). The organisation should be guided by experts through all this complexity if it wants to overcome all the tension that originates from the dynamics of change and survive.

THE IMPORTANCE OF EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT

Many authors claim that an organisation´s accomplishments, financial performance and employee outcomes may be predicted by the levels of employee engagement. However, it is surprising that even if it is a logical assumption, it appears that employee engagement is waning and that disengagement among the majority of today´s workforce is costing huge amounts of money to organisations in productivity loss (Saks, 2006). At present, workers are well educated, have greater expectations than those of past generations, and aspire to have a better understanding of the company they work for (Argenti, 2009). According to Argenti (2009), most companies´ senior managers exclude lower-level employees from taking part in most decision-making. According to Dolphin (1999), employee communication is too often conducted by in-experienced and junior personnel. Therefore, it could be



References: Argenti, P. (2009) Corporate Communication. 5th ed. Singapore: Mc Graw Hill. Carnall, C. (2007) Managing Change in Organisations. 5th ed. Essex: Prentice-Hall. Dolphin, R. (1999) The Fundamentals of Corporate Communications. Butterworth-Heinemann. Jimmieson, N. et al. (2004) A Longitudinal Study of Employee Adaptation to Organizational Change: The Role of Change-Related Information and Change-Related Self-Efficacy. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology , 9 (1), p.11-27. MacLeod, D. and Clarke, N. (2009) Engaging for Success: enhancing performance through employee engagement. [report] Department for Business Palmer, I Saks, A. (2006) Antecedents and Consequences of Employee Engagement. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 21 (7), p.600-619. www.theinformationdaily.com (2012) Making your organisation fit to change. [online] Available at: http://www.theinformationdaily.com/2012/12/21/making-your-organisation-fit-to-change [Accessed: 4 Mar 2013]. Jacobs, G. (2004) Corporate creative thinking. In: Oliver, S.M. ed. Handbook of corporate communications and public relations. London: Routledge, pp. 382-384. Barrett, D.J. (2004) A best-practice approach to change communication. In: Oliver, S.M. ed. Handbook of corporate communications and public relations. London: Routledge, pp. 22-24. (Senge, 1990, as cited in Carnall, p.164) *Appendix C (Darwin et al, 2002, as cited in Carnall, p. 84)

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