Hats off to Bruce Fern of Performance Connections International. In his recent study that interviewed 100 professionals across industries, 100% of the participants agreed that employees could be “engaged” but engaged in the wrong things, i.e., activities that are not aligned with the company goals or priorities. The study goes on to state “One out of three employees are engaged, but engaged in priorities that are different from and potentially in conflict with the direction of the business.” This is a critical nuance to surface and it bears our focused attention as HR professionals.
If “aligned engagement,” Fern’s apt moniker, is what’s missing, how can we connect people to corporate strategy and insure they are not simply engaging in projects that may be gratifying but are not connected to the direction and results required by the company? This type of disconnect has always been a sink-hole of employee resource. Now more than ever every cog in the company wheel needs to be functioning in an integrated manner to move the organization forward.
While I was listening to Fern’s research findings in a recent webinar, I couldn’t help but jump to the One Page Business Plan as the perfect tool to create alignment and generate employee engagement as a by-product. By starting at the executive level with a concise articulation of mission, objectives, strategies and action plans, and cascading this through all departments, everyone in the company can be in sync with corporate goals. At the same time the dialogue and feedback required in the process, builds empowerment and passion that every company sorely needs.