Monday, August 13, 2012

Encouragement Before Engagement

The human resources community seems to be obsessed with employee engagement. I count myself among this group. I want the people who work for my organization to feel connected, to believe in the mission, and to demonstrate that commitment in their work. There are all sorts of tools to help me measure, assess, and dig deeper into the mysterious world of employee engagement as well. 

As I step back and take a look at this whole process it sounds like I want an awful lot from the employees, doesn't it? Maybe you want all of this too. I think I may have put engagement first, when in reality engagement is only a result, nothing more.

Encouragement First
How many of us have appreciated an encouraging word or gesture over the years? Maybe it was when we were struggling with a project and a coworker or supervisor supported us through a frustrating time. Maybe it was when you were dealing with a difficult employee and a colleague helped you see the end point versus getting caught up in the moment. Or maybe it was when you were huffing and puffing trying to finish your first race and a random bystander shouted out your race number and told you to stay strong.

Whatever the source, encouragement is effective. No argument there.

Negativity Kills
The arch enemy of encouragement is negativity. This menacing attribute is toxic in just about every circumstance. Wherever it rears it's ugly head, negativity is a killer at work or home. The impact on morale, productivity, creativity and yes engagement, is simply not tolerable.

How About You
Today you'll decide if you're going to be an encourager, or if you're going to be the one that wallows in a world of negativity. Make the right choice, and you might just end up with a group of employees that are actually engaged.

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

photo credit


  1. Very interesting insights. I agree, encouragement ist essential for engagement.

    1. Thanks Tom...trying a newly inspired twist on an old theme.