I’m sure that you would agree that passion and engagement in the workplace make a big difference to both productivity and revenues. I’m also positive that it’s safe to say that when employees aren’t happy, valued or motivated there is a big chance that they’ll be jumping ship at the drop of a hat and possibly even accepting a job with your competition for the same salary. When good employees are leaving and morale is anemic it’s bad for business so why is it that there are so many companies that fail to address this situation and take proactive steps towards minimizing the effects? Is it entirely the employers fault or does the employee need to step up and accept their part of the blame?
Personal motivation is different for everybody but as an example I’m woken up with a hug and a kiss on the cheek every day from my 5 year old daughter before she goes to school. 5 minutes later her little sister comes running in the room and pretty much does the same thing. Without a doubt I’m a lucky father and a lucky human being and all thanks to a simple unspoken gesture by those who mean the world to me. It’s the best way to wake up that I can imagine and it put’s an instant smile on my face every single time. Its instant inspiration, automatic happiness and nothing seems impossible no matter how big or small the task ahead may be. It’s impossible to compare the feelings that parents have for their children to anything else but such passion, dedication and inspiration are important in all aspects of our lives and are so powerful that they can become the difference between success and failure.
Being passionate in our personal life is only part of the equation and as we spend a substantial chunk of our life at work so it’s important to find something that we enjoy doing so that our job becomes an extension of our passion and more than just a paycheck. It’s not hard to spot someone who’s passionate about what they do as they are usually the successful ones that effortlessly practice honesty and integrity and are always available to help, inspire and teach others who share the same passion. They genuinely make the world a better place and create hope for a brighter future.
Every HR professional should be able to explain the positive effects that the power of passion and engagement can make to the work place and how, when used correctly, they can significantly increase revenues and employee retention levels. A recent Gallup survey stated that highly engaged business units result in 21% greater profitability which translates into a significant increase in revenues. Companies who choose not to invest in the well being of their staff pay a hefty price as the lack of employee engagement costs U.S. based organizations between $450 and $550 billion annually. Below are some more 2017 U.S. workforce statistics that suck and suggest that companies need to do more to engage and ignite passion in their employees
- 51% of the US workforce is not engaged
- Only 16 % said they felt connected and engaged by employers
- 34 % of employees plan to leave their current job within a year
- 27 % of employees change jobs every year
- 51% of workers are looking to leave their current jobs
- 73% of employees are open to hearing about new opportunities
- 46% of employees would consider a job that matched their current salary or even paid less
- 37% of engaged employees are looking for jobs or watching for opportunities, as are 56% of not engaged and 73% of actively disengaged employees
- 20% of employers have replaced nearly half of their staff in the last 12 months
- 76% of employees who do not feel valued are looking for other job opportunities
- 46% of human resource leaders say employee burnout is responsible for up to half of their annual workforce turnover
- 14% of HR leaders say lack of executive support is an additional obstacle to improving retention in 2017; 13% cite a lack of organizational vision
- 28% of new hires are willing to quit their new jobs if they don’t find it satisfactory in the first 90 days
- Only 34% of companies focus on developing and retaining current employees
- 50% of employees leave their job because of their bosses
As I’ve already stated we spend a substantial chunk of our life at work so it’s important to find something that we enjoy doing. We as individuals need to understand the importance of genuinely enjoying what we do on both a professional and personal level before we can reach our full potential. A good leader must also recognize that a passionate and engaged workforce is good for business and that time and resources need to be made available to make sure that their “V8 engine” is consistently firing on all 8 cylinders and leaving the completion behind in a big cloud of dust. Below is a list of methods that can easily be implemented to keep employees actively passionate and engaged.
- Clearly communicate what’s expected of employees, what the company values and vision are, and how the company defines success.
- Give employees what they need to get the job done
- Act fairly, respect, be transparent, provide feedback and create trust
- Evaluate, coach and mentor for success
- Get to know your employees and make them feel like business partners
- Be actively engaged with your team and lead through example
- Delegate responsibilities and encourage teamwork, ideas and feedback
- Give special attention to high-potential employees
- Reward and recognize employees in ways that are meaningful to them
- Make sure that employees are made aware of career advancement opportunities and let them know what it takes to succeed
- Encourage and implement ongoing learning and re-training programs
- Constantly ask how you’re doing in your employees’ eyes
Richard Branson once said, “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” When you reach the point of not wanting to leave you know that you and your boss are truly on the road to success and should not miss the opportunity of passing your passion along to others and helping to make the world a better place.
However, it’s important to recognize that your ultimate happiness is not your boss’s responsibility, that part of the equation is all yours and yours alone. My humble advice is to do what makes you happy and be with those that make you shine the brightest. Life is simply too short for anything less. A simple good morning hug from my 2 daughters is part of my work/life happiness equation, what is part of yours? Whatever it is, use it, embrace it and let it grow in the workplace and in your personal life.
As always I look forward to hearing your comments