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Employee Engagement: 23 Things to Avoid That Cause Iatrogenic Disengagement

Are you and your organization creating the very disengagement you are trying to solve?

Wellbeing Symbol Flipped

In medicine there is a term call iatrogenic illness, define as of or relating to illness caused by medical examination or treatment. A common example is to go to the hospital for a procedure and end up with an infection. We don’t want to infect our employees with disengagement but many things we do may unknowingly or unintentionally be creating the very problem we are trying to solve.

Here is a list of 23 sources of disengagement caused by our efforts to engage:

  1. Taking away personal responsibility for engagement when we state that managers, leaders, or organizations are responsible for engagement.
  2. Using anonymous surveys unintentionally tells employees we don’t want to know who they are.
  3. Asking for comments on a survey and never ensuring that employees know that their comments were read and respected.
  4. Stopping our employee engagement work because we don’t like the lack of results we have received.
  5. Asking questions on an engagement survey that we lack the wherewithal to address.
  6. Taking far too much time between when we survey employees and when we release the data and sometimes never releasing the data. Engagement measure should be more like good toasters. You insert the data and have it pop up in no time.
  7. When employee engagement is talked about as something extra or a thing.
  8. Creating high levels of frustration when we foster motivation but fail to give employees the proper tools to do the job.
  9. When engagement is used as a new word for motivation and we fail to look deeper.
  10. Telling employees that we expect rather than encourage them to have a best friend at work.
  11. Having employee engagement as a mere program or event and expecting sustainable improvement.
  12. When we fail to ask employees directly what can be done to improve engagement.
  13. When we fail to ask employees to write some of the engagement survey questions.
  14. When we fail to believe in our employees.
  15. When disengagement is treated as a punishable offence rather than a trigger for a conversation.
  16. When we fail to address progress and setback as a key engagement issue.
  17. When our work becomes creepy.
  18. Failing to end something before we begin something.
  19. When we resort to hype and hyperbole about being a great place to work.
  20. Paying lots of money to be a great place to work and get the badge but there is a lack of substance behind the badge or credential.
  21. Believing that everyone should find the same sense of meaning from their work.
  22. Failure to make use of the inherent engagement in smart phones and tablets.
  23. Failure to move from surveys to just in time bio-measures of engagement.

What sources of iatrogenic disengagement are you seeing?

David Zinger is an employee engagement speaker and expert who founded the 6300 member global Employee Engagement Network.

Employee Engagement Pyramid: 10 Keys to Engaging The Power of One

A singular approach to employee engagement

Employee Engagement Model: Pyramid of Employee Engagement

I am working on the power of one and singularity in my employee engagement practice.  I have revisited my pyramid of employee engagement and awoke to another layer of it. This is a phenomenal coaching model to use with my clients who are striving towards full and powerful effectiveness, engagement, and efficiency. It offer a structure for them to follow and a structure for us to dialogue and develop engaging actions.

  1. Results: Work on what the client wants to achieve and for them to articulate the results. Discuss what needs to end and discuss what the end is they have in mind.
  2. Performance: Determine what the client will need to do to achieve results and how they make key performances worthy of their attention.
  3. Progress: Monitor and work towards progress and manage setbacks.
  4. Relationships: Determine key relationships that will be vital for the client.
  5. Recognition: Create self-recognition and fully recognize others.
  6. Moments: Determine a fine level of granularity of what behaviors to build, foster, and advance.
  7. Strengths: Determine and utilize strengths and use those strengths on a daily basis.
  8. Meaning: Focus on the why of work and find the why behind the results for self and others.
  9. Wellbeing: Encourage wellbeing found inside of work.
  10. Energy: Ensure that work is an energy gain and determine how to energize others.

David Zinger is an employee engagement speaker and coach based in Canada.

Enliven Energy: 10 of 10 Daily Questions to Improve Employee Engagement

Enliven Energy

(Reading time = 28 seconds)

Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement

This is the tenth of a 2 week series outlining a different engaging question you can ask yourself each day. The questions are derived from the pyramid of employee engagement. Here is today’s question based on enliven energy, the block at the base on the far right hand side of the pyramid. This question was originally developed by Donald Graves as he examined the energy to teach:

What gives me energy, what takes it away, and what for me is a waste of time?

David Zinger developed the 10 block pyramid of employee engagement as a model to structure strong, simple, sustainable and tactical improvements in employee engagement.

Enhance Wellbeing: 9 of 10 Daily Questions to Improve Employee Engagement

Enhance Wellbeing

(Reading time = 28 seconds)

Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement

This is the ninth of a 2 week series outlining a different engaging question you can ask yourself each day. The questions are derived from the pyramid of employee engagement. Here is today’s question based on enhance wellbeing, the second block from the right at the base of the pyramid.

How do I work this week so that work makes me well?

David Zinger developed the 10 block pyramid of employee engagement as a model to structure strong, simple, sustainable and tactical improvements in employee engagement.

Make Meaning: 8 of 10 Daily Questions to Improve Employee Engagement

Make Meaning

(Reading time = 28 seconds)

Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement

This is the eighth of a 2 week series outlining a different engaging question you can ask yourself each day. The questions are derived from the pyramid of employee engagement. Here is today’s question based on making meaning, the second block on the base of the pyramid of employee engagement.

Why do I do what I do?

David Zinger developed the 10 block pyramid of employee engagement as a model to structure strong, simple, sustainable and tactical improvements in employee engagement.

Leverage Strengths: 7 of 10 Daily Questions to Improve Employee Engagement

Leverage Strengths

(Reading time = 28 seconds)

Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement

This is the seventh of a 2 week series outlining a different engaging question you can ask yourself each day. The questions are derived from the pyramid of employee engagement. Here is today’s question based on leveraging strengths, the first block on the bottom row of the pyramid of employee engagement.

What is a fundamental strength I have for work and how will I use it in the service of others this week?

David Zinger developed the 10 block pyramid of employee engagement as a model to structure strong, simple, sustainable and tactical improvements in employee engagement.

Master Moments: 6 of 10 Daily Questions to Improve Employee Engagement

Master Moments

(Reading time = 28 seconds)

Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement

This is the sixth of a 2 week series outlining a different engaging question you can ask yourself each day. The questions are derived from the pyramid of employee engagement. Here is today’s question based on mastering moments, the block furthest to the right on the third row of the pyramid of employee engagement.

What can I do in the very next moment to enhance engagement for myself or someone else at work?

David Zinger developed the 10 block pyramid of employee engagement as a model to structure strong, simple, sustainable and tactical improvements in employee engagement.

Foster Recognition: 5 of 10 Daily Questions to Improve Employee Engagement

Fostering Recognition

(Reading time = 28 seconds)

Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement

This is the fifth of a 2 week series outlining a different engaging question you can ask yourself each day. The questions are derived from the pyramid of employee engagement. Here is today’s question based on fostering recognition, the center block on the pyramid of employee engagement.

How will I recognize someone this week for their good work?

David Zinger developed the 10 block pyramid of employee engagement as a model to structure strong, simple, sustainable and tactical improvements in employee engagement.