Here’s a quote from an article appearing on prcarbon.com:
“Employee engagement can result in a drastic loss of productivity, costly turnovers, and negative employer-employee relationships. Employers who empower and interactive with their employees experience higher job retention rates and as much as 200 percent more productivity.”
I certainly have no issues with that (although it might have been a bit clearer had the paragraph begun with the words "A lack of"). It was from a guy named Ricky Kalmon, who went on to say:
“The same employee who is disengaged and disinterested can become one of a company’s most valuable assets when they feel empowered and confident that their contributions are valued.”
Yep. We’re still good. I began to get concerned, though, when I read that Kalmon had developed “employee engagement programs” that are “tailored to a business’ unique issues, while providing them with the tools and techniques to increase employee self-esteem, confidence, and motivation.”
How to begin? An SAT-style analogy might be helpful here:
Tools and Techniques are to Employee Engagement as Paint-by-Numbers is to Art.
You might feel like you’re creating a masterpiece, but all you’re doing is dabbing colors onto a canvas. You can put on a smock and a beret and invite your employees to an exhibit of your work, and they’ll show up because they have to. But they’ll be rolling their eyes over your dilettante-ish approach to something that deserves more serious-minded consideration.
Things get worse. Kalmon is described as a “Motivational Speaker, Mindset Expert, Empowerment Coach, Celebrity Hypnotist, and TV Personality.”
Motivational Speaking is to Employee Engagement as Twinkies are to Nutrition.
Everybody might get a sugar rush, but it will be gone quickly. Unfortunately, the extra institutional avoirdupois will last, and it will add to the inertial load on your organization.
Celebrity Hypnotists are to Employee Engagement as Kim Kardashian is to Culture.
Net: If you want to Kardashianize your approach to Employee Engagement, then by all mean sign up for these programs. But if you want to be a real leader, you might want to consider other alternatives.