I had a brief but wonderful chat with a guy today who leads a fascinating business called Loving Monday. I felt so inspired by the conversation (and the company name) that I wanted to share it.
Peter’s organisation focuses on coaching and enabling leaders to “be engaging” rather than “do engagement” – his words not mine. Brilliant.
Notice, no mention of the word “employee”. There’s a reason for that!
When we talk less about “employee engagement” and more about “engaging” it puts a human touch back into the conversation and shifts it towards being a behaviour led approach and not a job that needs to be done.
I suppose it isn’t rocket science but after spending so many years in corporate, I’ve witnessed the employee-led approach to culture – employee engagement surveys, employee focus groups and more recently the eNPS – or the Employee Net Promoter Score.
In fact, nearly 80% of executives rated employee experience very important in Deloitte’s 2017 Global Human Capital Trends survey. Not surprising – with the transparency of social platforms like Glassdoor.com there’s nowhere for culture to hide. If your workforce isn’t engaged, it can creep (like a different kind of culture) across the business and impact talent attraction, customer experience and ultimately profitability.
More than that, all the time we put the word ‘employee’ in front of every program, aren’t we already assuming a top-down hierarchical mandate? Separating leaders from their workers?
I often talk about social business and humanising the brand using social media. Flipping brands upside down so that raw, authentic stories from employees are put in the spotlight by the logo.
But, how will we ever put personality into our brands unless we embrace the people that work behind them as more than “employees”?
The conversation today endorsed my belief that engagement and advocacy go together like tea and biscuits. Perfectly suited. Can’t really have one without the other.
Engaging leadership is the key to building the trust, transparency and community that’s needed to win the hearts and minds of our employees. Only then will they truly live the values, advocate the brand and love their Mondays.
I love a Monday – do you?