Are You and/or Your Employees Fully Engaged at Work?

The beginning of the year is the perfect time to reflect on levels of engagement at work, both for yourself and members of your team.  It is this time of year that people reflect on whether they are in the right job and to the delight of recruitment agents everywhere, the answer for many is a resounding “no.”

Engagement at work is a serious issue when you consider the cost to businesses of low engagement. A 2006 Gallup survey indicated that only 1 in 4 NZ employees are actively engaged and a huge portion of employees are neutral.  Essentially that means the difference between those that go the extra mile and the majority who merely turn up and do the minimum required.  The survey estimated that this lack of engagement costs NZ businesses $3.7 billion per annum.  Ouch!  And this figure doesn’t even take into account the ‘human’ cost including low self esteem, feelings of inadequacy, general unhappiness and stress to name just a few.

But this sounds all very negative doesn’t it?  So let’s look at the positive side to the engagement equation.  Given the importance of the issue and the vast amount of research conducted, many businesses have worked to improve engagement and have reaped the rewards as a result.

A host of research exists to demonstrate the direct correlation between people’s level of engagement and company’s financial performance.  Finally we can provide the evidence those bean-counters have been looking for – phew!  Here’s just one researched sample from Rutgers University.

Companies (USA) with high engagement:

    • Contribute to a 12% higher share price.
    • Produce $27,000 more sales per employee.
    • Create $18,600 more market value per employee.
    • Generate $3,800 more profit per employee.


In case you’re not convinced still, then consider these words from Jack Welch, author of “Good to Great.”

“Employee Engagement First.  It goes without saying that no company, small or large, can win over the long run without energised employees who believe in the mission and understand how to achieve it.  That’s why you need to take measure of employee engagement at least once a year through anonymous surveys in which people feel completely safe to speak their minds.”


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