Is your team disengaged or drifting? If yes, what are you doing about it?

In a biannual survey conducted in September 2011, Modern Survey, a human capital measurement company,  found the following:

  •  70% of employees are now either disengaged or under engaged at their job – a record high number since Modern Survey began tracking these numbers in 2007 before the recession started.
  •  The number of fully engaged employees has dropped to a record low of just 8%…compared to one year ago when 15% of the workforce was fully engaged, the most recent data demonstrates a profound deterioration in the number of workers who are fully committed to their work and to their organization.
  • The engagement components which have seen the furthest erosion in the past year include “discretionary effort,” down ten percentage points from 58% favorable in August 2010 to 48% favorable in September 2011, and “belief in the future of the organization,” which has tumbled most severely from 48% favorable in 2010 to just 34% in the most recent study.
  • Shockingly, while 70% of workers are disengaged or under engaged, approximately one fifth of workers reported that they are currently looking for a new job. (Because of view that there are few jobs to be had and/or they would have to take a pay cut).

So, you have disengaged employees or they are drifting.  And, they aren’t going to leave so it’s your problem to fix.  A recent article in HBR outlines 4 steps to get back on track:

  1. Sit with your team and discuss what you have observed in a non-judgmental way setting the tone for and open non-defensive conversation.
  2. Ask others what they are experiencing.  Let everyone be heard.
  3. Revisit your vision.  Why do we exist.  What purpose do we serve.  Where are we going.  What are shared values.  Taking a “time out” to pull your team together, to regroup and refocus on your vision, will allow you to easily set a new trajectory that will get you where you want to go
  4. Last, move to problem-solving. What’s the best way to get back on track? What goals will move your team toward your shared vision? Do you need to change about the way you work together?

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