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Defining Terms of Employee Engagement

Some of my colleagues attended an event last week on Employee Engagement. The speaker asked who ‘knew what employee engagement was?’ Only 5 of the 60 HR professionals attending put up their hands. Either they were too shy to say or this is not a priority to truly understand employee engagement. Yet more than ever we want more from people…to be successful in business employee engagement is paramount.

I learnt way back in my Ansett days that there was no point in spending a bunch of money on advertising if your people are not delivering the same message consistently. ie don’t advertise great service if your staff are not delivering consistently great service. I also learned that lip service from ‘management’ does not make an engaged workforce.

I came across this quote recently.

“Research indicates that while values and cultural attitudes provide a foundation for employee engagement, to drive performance and results, there must be a clear link between executable strategy and behaviour. Achieving this link is a top priority, and in most cases, the CEO – not HR- appears to be leading the charge.”
Deloitte – The Economist Intelligence Unit 2007.

Commitment to true employee engagement of which reward and recognition are an essential part – must come from the most senior leaders in the organisation. “As the leadership team goes – so goes the rest of the organisation.”

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