The Dark Side Of Employee Engagement

dark side


It’s a catchy headline. It’s not mine. It’s from this article. Virtuously, it quickly reveals that dark side: “The only reason that any of this employee engagement stuff happens, is because companies want you to make them money.” I’m not sure that is such a dark side, or that it would be much of a surprise. It also disregards the organisations that aren’t profit-driven like charities, volunteer groups and government agencies who also see value in employee engagement.

But then the article takes a great turn and focuses on ROI – return on investment. That’s a much better turn of phrase and I agree with the sentiment behind it. Any kind of organisational effort, including employee engagement programmes, need to have a point, a purpose, goals and objectives. And achievement of, and progress towards, those objectives need to be monitored and measured. How can we know if we’ve succeeded (or not) if we don’t know and agree what success is? Investment in employee engagement is often more than money – there’s time, effort, risk to reputation, the opportunity cost of other efforts you could have done instead that you chose not to do, and more.

Fessing up, the Star Wars imagery idea is mine. That article didn’t impose that. I’m pretty sure Darth Vader didn’t put much effort into employee engagement, although that bit where he used the force to telekinetically strangle a commander who failed to capture “the rebel scum” did seem very motivational in the short term.


About Terry Williams - The Brain-Based Boss

I'm all about engaging people and helping you engage yours to influence behaviour to improve results - at work and at home. Maybe you're a manager, a salesperson, a leader, a parent, a presenter or an event organiser? You need to grab your people's attention, create some rapport, be memorable and influence behaviour change. How can we do that? I'm originally a trainer by trade, turned manager, turned comedian and partway back again. Author of 'THE GUIDE: How to kiss, get a job & other stuff you need to know', I write and speak about how to engage people, be they employees, family or yourself. How can we connect with people’s own internal motivations and help them use their own inner passions to drive towards productivity, success and happiness? And hopefully have a few laughs along the way... As a trainer facilitating learning and development in others, I find myself drawing on my own extensive business experience. I specialise in the delivery of high impact, customised training solutions for organisations that are serious about improving the performance and lives of their people.

Posted on August 11, 2014, in Employee Engagement, Team Building, Team Leadership, The Brain-Based Boss and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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