What Does Workplace Engagement Really Look Like?

What Does Workplace Engagement Really Look Like?

by Dr. Rick Goodman on March 2, 2016

As a keynote speaker, one of the topics I most love to discuss is employee engagement. What I’ve noticed is that many organizations are really hungry to discuss this topic, yet there’s often a misperception about what employee engagement actually is.

Think about it for a second: Do you know how to define the term? If someone asked you what employee engagement was, how would you respond?

It’s one of those buzzwords that a lot of us accept without really unpacking it—so let me try to clear some things up. First, a few words about what employee engagement is not. For one thing, engagement is not happiness—not exactly. Sure, engagement may make many of your employees happier at the office—but if happiness was all there was to it, you could just buy a keg and a Ping-Pong table for your break room and be done with it.

Happiness is not the same thing as engagement—and neither is satisfaction. You may have plenty of satisfied employees who are perfectly willing to do their job from 9 to 5 each day, but they won’t necessarily go the extra mile or even feel particularly loyal to the organization.

So what is employee engagement? Here’s my simple definition: Employee Engagement is the measure of how emotionally committed your employees are to the team.

To put it another way: Your employees are engaged when they show up for more than a paycheck. They’re engaged when they feel like their work is meaningful, and that the organization is doing something significant.

As such, engagement doesn’t necessarily look like employee parties, socialization, or games—though those things can help. Employee engagement is founded on something more basic—letting employees feel like they are part of something, and that you have invested in them as integral members of your team.

Some of the most fundamental hallmarks of employee engagement: Soliciting employee feedback; genuinely listening to them; ensuring they are clear on the vision of the organization; and showing that you want them around for the long haul—something you can do by providing opportunities for professional training and development.

That’s what employee engagement looks like to me—but what does it look like to you? Leave me a comment to share your take!

Dr. Rick Goodman CSP is a thought leader in the world of leadership and is one of the most sought after conference keynote speakers on leadership, engagement and business growth in the United States and internationally.

He is also the author of the book Living A Championship Life, “A Game Plan for Success,” and the co–author of the book Jamie’s Journey: Travels with My Dad written by his sixteen-year-old daughter Jamie.

Dr. Rick is famous for helping organizations, corporations and individuals with systems and strategies that produce increased profits and productivity without having the challenges of micromanaging the process. Some of Dr. Rick’s clients include Heineken, AT&T, Boeing, Cavium Networks, IBM, Hewlett Packard and Franklin Templeton Investments.

You can contact Dr. Rick at www.rickgoodman.com or call 888-267-6098.


Dr. Rick GoodmanWhat Does Workplace Engagement Really Look Like?