Good news per Gallup is that 29% of employees are truly “engaged.” The concerning news is that 54% of poll respondents are “disengaged.” But the scary part is that 17% of employees are “actively disengaged.”
By making organizations flat (fewer layers of management) we have significantly increased the busyness of managers, and equally decreased the time and attention that managers and team members share; a fact that has escalated the occurrences of negative workplace relationships. These negative workplace relationships, in turn, are contributing to the majority of American employees being disengaged or actively disengaged, and why so much time, energy and resources are wasted.
Coaching and mentoring is an immediate remedy for bringing back into organizations what years of downsizing, reengineering, and flattening have taken out – the care and feeding of people.
As a manager, when you understand how, who, and when to coach your people, you pave a path toward engaging and keeping employees engaged. The Gallup Survey asked employees what they want and what is important in order to be effective in their roles. Here, in short, is what workers said they want from their managers:
- Focus me
- Know me
- Care about me
- Hear me
- Help me feel proud
- Help me review my contributions
- Equip me
- Help me see my value
- Help me grow
- Help me see my importance
- Help me build mutual trust
- Challenge me
And how, Gallup asked employees, do managers do that?
- Provide feedback and guidance
- Make real time to discuss problems
- Seek ideas and input from everyone
- Provide the resources to solve problems or to do a job well
- Give real recognition and/or reward
- Provide opportunities for people to develop their potential
- Stay realistic about the pressure to perform and achieve more with less
- Provide opportunities for social interaction
- Train people how to resolve interpersonal conflicts
- Promote joy and appropriate humor within the office
- Be flexible; help people to actively balance work and home responsibilities
I hear these requests as practically shouting out COACHING. Why, then, are many coaching initiatives still falling short of expectations? Because the underlying organizational fixation with expedience, impatience, and efficiency get in the way of what a solid coaching relationship requires: time and attention.
You know that engaged employees are more productive, more profitable, engender customer loyalty, stay longer, and focus more on quality. But do you know what engages employees? Here are the top conditions for engagement:
- A strong relationship with their manager
- Clear communication from their manager
- A clear path set for focusing on what they do best
- Strong relationships with their coworkers
This continues to point the way to investing in coaching skills. Managers who coach there people demonstrate and invest in developing positive relationships – the kind of relationships that engender full engagement. Engaging managers learn who and when to coach and engaging organizations provide managers with necessary skills and training to become these kinds of coaches.
Coaching programs demonstrably keep, grow, and sustain top performance; keep the current performers engaged, grow rising performers, and sustain performance over time.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to discuss how to train your managers to bring more engagement, productivity, and success to your business.