A recent Gallup poll states that 71% of employees at US organizations are not engaged in their jobs. Oh man. What’s also fascinating about this poll is that highly educated and middle-aged workers are less likely to be engaged. So how does a company deal with the intellectual and aged-based ennui that develops thru the course of an individual’s career?
The national engagement data reveal that businesses in the U.S. — and in turn, the U.S. economy as a whole — might not be reaching maximum worker performance because of the high percentage of not engaged and actively disengaged employees. Increasing the percentage of engaged workers in the U.S. could spur a significant amount of job growth, as detailed in Gallup’s latest book, The Coming Jobs War.
Why is it important to have engaged employees? Well, its kinda like that customer experience thing I like to talk about — you know, the one where you create an emotional bond between a brand and a customer? Only on the internal side. When an employee is engaged, he/she feels a connection to their company and they have passion for it, they become rabid evangelists for the brand. Its got be a huge bummer to get up every day and go to work for a company that you don’t feel passionate about. And for the brand, they’re not reaching near enough their productivity potential from their employees, hence are losing a critical competitive weapon.
Today’s enterprise 2.0 tools offer solutions to help employees stay connected with each other and with the brand as whole but from the looks of things many enterprises aren’t driving the connectedness that’s needed to help drive passion. Now granted, unless you’ve got some Mosaic talents, you can’t get water from a stone. Some dogs just won’t hunt. Some fish you can’t fry… and the metaphors go on and on… you just can’t elicit passion in employees, there has to be something for them to get excited about… something for them to get hooked by. So before you load up on more E2.0 solutions, make sure you discover the passions that run deep in your company and surface them thru conversational tactics.
Deploying E2.0 tools can address a host of employee maladies and actually foster an environment where employees are:
- Inspired and productive
- Develop networks around their individual passions
- Gain needed support from other workers
- Create rather than churn
- Generate novel ideas that can help the organiztation succeed
E2.0 is not a panacea. It won’t address all the issues around a passionless, disconnected work force. But its a significant start.