Companies Get Lucky (?) with Partial Engagement
“I love working with my customers. They’re what keep me engaged. Can’t say I feel the same about the company I work for.”
“I’m upset by the lack of professionalism in my office. Co-workers dress sloppily. They curse in the office and don’t seem to take work seriously. What keeps me going are the conversations I have with my counterparts in other offices.”
These highlight discussions I had recently with business professionals in different fields. I’ve heard similar sentiments from employees who stay engaged for the satisfaction of working with their customers and/or co-workers. According to a TINYPulse study on engagement and organizational culture, “Peers and camaraderie are the number one reason employees go the extra mile … not the money. Camaraderie plays the true motivating role in encouraging employees to outperform expectations.
Enjoying their work with co-workers and customers is key to employees being engaged, but it’s not enough. Total engagement happens when employees connect on three fundamental levels:
- with the organization itself – when employees understand the organization’s purpose and strategy, including knowing where they fit in and what’s expected of them.
- with customers – when employees know who the customers are and what is important to them so employees can better serve them.
- with fellow employees – when employees also understand and respect how everyone’s work is interconnected in achieving organizational goals.
The people I spoke to acknowledged they’re not disengaged, just partially engaged. How fortunate for their employers. But I can’t help wondering how much better they and their respective companies would be if they were fully engaged on all levels.
As Meatloaf sang, “two out of three ain’t bad.” Or is it?