Engagement

Not So Different – Helping Children Understand

He’s a writer of a popular blog, a book author, and sports freak. He’s cofounder of a growing nonprofit that helps others live better. He’s an in-demand speaker for audiences that range from elementary schools to universities to pharmaceutical companies. He loves to travel with his girlfriend and his family. He’s Shane Burcaw, and his 

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“Maniacal Operations” and Other Sad but True Tales

When it comes to management and organizational dysfunction, there’s little that surprises me anymore. Asking a colleague about work, I got this description of the company’s new president: “I know all about his first marriage, his second marriage, his grandchildren, etc., but he doesn’t know anything about me. He dominates executive meetings with his talking 

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Random Acts of Acknowledgment

“What a good helper you are!” my mother would say to a young child carefully handing boxes of cereal from the grocery shopping cart to be placed on the check-out counter. I’ll never forget the smiles on the child’s and parents’ faces when my mother would compliment them. Similarly, smiling at the cashier and fellow 

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Engaging Workplace Wisdom — Tips on What Works to Engage Others

While I typically speak about employee/volunteer engagement with people currently active in the workforce, the prospect of being with an audience of retirees was too good to pass up. My recent session for Penn State Lehigh Valley’s SAGE Lecture Series was designed with a dual purpose: 1) share the current state of workplace engagement and 2) tap into 

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Who is Actually Responsible for Workplace Engagement?

Need to create an engaged workplace? While workshops, webinars, and articles abound on the subject, it takes more than just buying into the value and practice of engagement to be effective. It’s also important to understand who is actually responsible for engagement in the workplace. Engagement is a responsibility shared by both employees and employers: Employees are 

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Can You Treat Customers Like Employees and Employees Like Customers?

Curiosity. A hunger to explore what works and what doesn’t. Respectively challenging others’ ideas. These are among the many reasons I enjoy speaking with groups of young adults preparing for leadership roles. I recall one such gathering that involved an open discussion on marketing. We talked about dealing with difficult customers (it’s OK to terminate a 

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What Employees Want Most from Internal Communications Channels

[Note: This guest post is courtesy of Alison Davis, founder and CEO of Davis & Company, an award-winning employee communication firm that for 30 years has helped leading companies – such as Johnson & Johnson, Motorola Solutions, Nestle, Roche and Rogers Communications – increase employee engagement. Alison sets the strategic direction for the firm, consults with 

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Where You Lead From Makes a Difference

My recent post about Zoltan Merszei‘s message on organizational strategy included developing a “vision of what’s to come” as “the ultimate insurance of success.” Articulating and sharing a well thought out vision certainly contributes to success, but it’s not enough. It also takes a leader who knows how to effectively engage and connect employees with the leader’s 

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“Protect People From Too Much Organization”

The yellowing, decades-old piece of paper I found in my files featured this striking advice from Zoltan Merszei, former executive at Occidental Petroleum Corporation and Dow Chemical Company. Merszei wrote it “as a reminder that we need to protect people from too much organization, while never destroying the organization itself.” His message is still relevant: Always 

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Color Me Insulted: A Failed Attempt at Engagement

Picture this: a well-known brokerage firm recovering from a major scandal is faced with increasing losses and decreasing brand confidence. A well-intentioned attempt to rally its “dispirited” employees backfires and results in further disengagement. Here’s the true and sad story as told to me recently by a former employee. “I remember sitting at my mahogany 

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