Saturday, February 6, 2016

What if you worked for the most benevolent organisation on earth?

We are all aware that the 21st century presents us with combinations of speed and complexity that we have never seen before. We call it the new normal because the old normal is gone forever. The old way of doing things is not coming back. For most of us, it has been painful. The consequences of new normal are reaching down and having an impact not only on organisations, but on individual employees too.

Imagine that you work for the most benevolent organisation on earth – an organisation that believes in and practices fanatical employee support. The organisation has anointed you with a big title, a big office, and a big salary. It assigns people to clean your house, do your laundry, and file your tax returns. There are music lessons for your kids, personal trainers and home decorators, unlimited spa treatments, and extended family vacations. Not least, you have a great boss. In the history of the world, there has never been a more successful organisation, and you are exquisitely blessed to be right in the middle of it.

Now let’s ask ourselves some questions:

Are you engaged?

Are you passionately connected and actively participating in the organisation and the work you do?

Do you bring you’re A-game to work every day?

The answer to all this is that even in these circumstances, you have only a 25 per cent chance of being highly engaged.

The organisation may lavish you with perks, but those perks don’t hold the key to engagement. Feeding the pleasure centre of the brain through extrinsic rewards doesn’t engage a person and bring real, lasting fulfilment. At best, it creates short term pleasure or hedonic wellbeing.

This is very different from true and sustained engagement.

Most employees are either bored or burnt out.

Most are disengaged.

Even when organisations practice fanatical employee support, they still have huge numbers of disengaged employees.


This is what we need to know.

But instead of asking disengaged employees why they are disengaged, ask the engaged employees about what makes them engaged.

Tonnes of organisations rise and fall more quickly in the new normal. The average span of competitive advantage is shorter. You don’t know what’s coming next. Most organisations are doing their best to be competitive and take care of their employees, but they can’t make promises.

Who can promise job security?

It’s simply not something that’s within the control of most organisations, yet it’s the highly engaged that have the best claim on job security. Unsurprisingly, they are the ones who find opportunities to grow, develop, and advance.

“Our plans miscarry because they have no aim. When a man does not know what harbour he is making for, no wind is the right wind.” – Seneca the Younger

In order to control our own levels of engagement, we have be intrinsically ready to own our engagement. We cannot let external benefits drive our levels of engagement – that is in our own hands.

from The Express Tribune Blog

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