Is it truly possible to condense the science of employee engagement into a single sentence?
I know of no topic that is more important to the long-term success of a business than engagement
. An axiom of Ford CEO Mark Fields is, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” Despite the click-baiting contrarians, Gallup and others have a solid body of research that shows that engagement is the antecedent of service, quality, sales, profits, and ultimately shareholder value.
Unfortunately, employee engagement
continues to be a topic that many find confusing. This confusion is unnecessary. Despite our VUCA world (characterized by volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity) that has made both time and money endangered species, it’s never been easier to drive massive employee engagement
throughout your organization. It’s never been easier to engage your own direct reports. It doesn’t require a high IQ, high-priced consultants, long-term planning, or even a lot of time or money.
The idea of a one-sentence employee engagement course is intended to cut through this noise. To make things as simple and as actionable as possible
. Just 20 words. Words that I’ve seen work miracles in countless organizations.
It’s true that there are endless nuances, opinions, and approaches to engagement, but for every valuable detail, there are many others with very low ROI. The details often lead to confusion and inaction. We want to start with the basics, which we can later build upon.
I’ve seen the employee engagement survey items (i.e., questions) from a dozen different companies, including all the big ones. I’ve seen the engagement survey reports from dozens of companies in dozens of industries. I don’t sell engagement surveys or consulting; I don’t have a dog in those fights. But after looking at all that material and talking with all those experts, I see much common ground. The common ground includes drivers of engagement that are memorable, and therefore actionable
every single day, week, month, and year.
The goal is to craft a sentence that all front-line managers can remember. A single sentence that can be scribbled on the inside of a Moleskine notebook or perhaps jotted on an index card and taped to a computer monitor. It’s not a sentence that one delivers to others, but rather a sentence that one
The sentence I’ve crafted can easily be reduced further. And of course, it can be enhanced and made longer. In fact,
. (It would be great to see your single sentence in the comments below.)
I hope you’ll read that sentence again.
That single sentence encapsulates the “why” and the “how” based on two decades of studying and applying the principles of engagement.
: engagement results in increased loyalty and effort.