5 Tips to Better Engage with Millennial Managers

Millennials have long been a challenge for leaders who have been seeking to improve engagement and productivity in the workplace. With a preference for transparency, direct dialogue, better work-life balance, the millennials have challenged established organizational practices like no generation before them. Now as the millennials take on managerial roles at the workplace, organizational leadership … Continue reading 5 Tips to Better Engage with Millennial Managers

9 Aspects of Effective Employee Recognition

Employee Recognition is essential. Everybody gets that part. What goes into making recognition effective, however, is mostly guesswork. And that is not all bad – because there is no template for doing recognition right. What works for a young e-commerce start-up with 20 somethings hacking away day and night might not make sense for an … Continue reading 9 Aspects of Effective Employee Recognition

Applying Design Thinking to Employee Engagement

Design thinking is now taking center stage in improving Employee Engagement and Experience at the workplace. Marketers have long obsessed about the Customer Experience (CX) journey.  HR teams at leading companies are now adopting the same principles to better manage and improve the “Employee Experience”.

#FridayVideo: Challenging Jobs as an Employee Motivator

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1UnJrko08I I am starting a new series of short videos on Fridays (and hopefully will keep posting). We would all love to have work that keeps up engaged and motivated. There are several dimensions to what drives engagement and the "job role" itself contributes very heavily to motivation levels. Put another way, if you are … Continue reading #FridayVideo: Challenging Jobs as an Employee Motivator

When people Quit: Intelligent timely interventions can reduce employee attrition

A lot has been written about why employees quit; with people managers taking a brunt of the blame. But precious little has been discussed about the “when” and unsurprisingly managers can’t do much about most of those timings - or can they? “Yo I couldn't give a toss, about my shitty job Wrote a letter … Continue reading When people Quit: Intelligent timely interventions can reduce employee attrition

Influencing emotions through employee recognition

Summary: Emotions and moods are an important part of our work life. We tend to associate both these with individuals, but they are influenced heavily by what the leaders and managers do! Melancholy mood Why must you blind me? Pity me and break the chains The chains that bind me Won't you release me, set … Continue reading Influencing emotions through employee recognition

Employee Recognition through Celebrating Failure.

Summary: Failures are bad. Learning from them is easy. Right? Well not quite. Organizations need better ways to go beyond superficial or self-serving learning and recognition might be just the right solution.   “I have not failed, I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work” – Thomas Alva Edison. As babies and toddlers we … Continue reading Employee Recognition through Celebrating Failure.

The difference between Employee Satisfaction and Employee Engagement

Employee satisfaction and engagement are deceptively similar sounding attitudes when seen superficially. Many people tend to use these terms interchangeably but there are clear differences between these two and it is important for business leaders to know the nuances. In fact in some organizations, shaking up satisfied employees might be the key to growth! It … Continue reading The difference between Employee Satisfaction and Employee Engagement

The ABC’s of Attitude, Cognitive Dissonance and Echo Chambers

Attitude, is a much used and equally abused word in daily life – both in the workplace and outside of it. It is often used to dismiss those who don’t ‘play along’ with broad stroke classifications of ‘having a wrong attitude’. But therein lies the rub. Very few dig in deeper to understand what causes … Continue reading The ABC’s of Attitude, Cognitive Dissonance and Echo Chambers

Where Appraisal meets Engagement…

It’s that time of the year again! When the industry buzzword is “Appraisal” ….. at least for a few months. For employees – commences the race to getting to the highest bonus bracket. For managers, supervisors – dealing with the stress of negotiations, confrontations and potentially unwarranted employee pride For HR – is the true … Continue reading Where Appraisal meets Engagement…

n:gage Content: Download the 10Cs of Engagement Flash Cards

Ivey Business Journal published an awesome post titled 'What Engages Employees the Most OR, the Ten Cs of Employee Engagement' We liked it so much that we have used that post as a reference to make some quick Flashcards for you to use as reference on a daily basis as you go about your work … Continue reading n:gage Content: Download the 10Cs of Engagement Flash Cards

n:gage Leader Speak Series #2: Interview with Kavitha Balasubramanian, Director – Human Resources, GreenPoint Global

In the second issue of the Leader Speak series, we publish an interview with Kavitha Balasubramanian, Director – Human Resources, GreenPoint Global. Kavitha too responds to questions on the importance of recognition in engaging the modern workforce and the challenges she sees in implementing a successful engagement strategy.   An excerpt: Many companies set ad-hoc goals … Continue reading n:gage Leader Speak Series #2: Interview with Kavitha Balasubramanian, Director – Human Resources, GreenPoint Global

n:gage Leader Speak Series: Interview with Anirban Das, CPO, Lakshmikumaran and Sridharan

                        The n:gage banner has been around for a couple of years now. We have done surveys, banners, a couple of eBooks in the past but it has been always a bit sporadic. We are now changing that and making n:gage our overarching theme … Continue reading n:gage Leader Speak Series: Interview with Anirban Das, CPO, Lakshmikumaran and Sridharan

Building ‘Antifragile’ organizations through recognition

“Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shocks and stays the same; the antifragile gets better.” – Nassim Nicholas Taleb  Organizations are not very different from living organisms – they are born, learn, evolve and die (sooner or later). If one were to take the analogy one level deeper, employees would be cells and … Continue reading Building ‘Antifragile’ organizations through recognition

Candies or Charcoal: What is Santa rating your engagement skills as?

You better watch out, you better not cry Better not pout, I'm telling you why Santa Claus is comin' to town He's making a list and checking it twice Gonna find out who's naughty and nice Santa Claus is comin' to town (Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town, Lonestar) Children around the world are told … Continue reading Candies or Charcoal: What is Santa rating your engagement skills as?

3 tips to ‘power-up’ timely recognition at the workplace.

Employee recognition is an extremely effective way to empower your best workers. Whether you recognize an employee with a raise or just a quick email, it's important to let employees know when they're doing well. However, recognition alone isn't enough. If you wait too long to give an employee the credit they deserve, or you don't … Continue reading 3 tips to ‘power-up’ timely recognition at the workplace.

4 smart ways to engage with Millennials in India

The psyche, work ethic and life choices of millennials are dissected and discussed continually by everyone from opinion columnists to psychologists to economists. The millennial generation, whose members, born from 1980 to 2000, grew up during an unparalleled digital revolution, has a unique position in history, coming of age simultaneously with the rise of the … Continue reading 4 smart ways to engage with Millennials in India

kfit: Fighting the scourge of Diabetes and Hypertension – Part 1

This is the first post in a four-part series on the scourge of Diabetes and Hypertension. This one explains the diseases and the risks associated with it. The subsequent posts will deal with information on prevention, details on diet, exercise and stress management techniques.  Sarabjit, is 35, and determined to make it to the top … Continue reading kfit: Fighting the scourge of Diabetes and Hypertension – Part 1

kfit Health Nugget #4: Rejuvenate in your ‘downtime’

In today’s corporate world, people always seem to be busy and on the ‘go’; rushing through meetings, attending phone calls, ‘always’ in motion, ‘always’ doing something. And then there is ‘DOWNTIME”. There are sudden free moments when there is a client call getting delayed by 15 mins, extended travel time due to traffic jams and … Continue reading kfit Health Nugget #4: Rejuvenate in your ‘downtime’

Ongoing Conversations: Time to Bring Stay Interviews to the Fore

interview: /ˈɪntəvjuː/ noun a meeting of people face to face, especially for consultation. It is that time of the year. Annual performance appraisals are underway. The dreaded bell-curves will be created. Feedback sessions will be held with employees and then the resignations will come pouring in. And here is something that I have always found hilarious: when … Continue reading Ongoing Conversations: Time to Bring Stay Interviews to the Fore

A Pareto Curveball on Employee Performance

I can't feel nothing but this chain that binds me/Lost track of how far I've gone/ How far I've gone, how high I've climbed/On my back's a sixty pound stone/ On my shoulder a half mile of line (The Rising, Bruce Springsteen)     Curveball: a slow or moderately fast baseball pitch thrown with spin … Continue reading A Pareto Curveball on Employee Performance

5 predictions about Employee Engagement in 2015

It's the almost the end of 2014 and we have seen momentum building in the world of Employee Engagement. The approach is maturing. More people are actually talking about it as a strategic requirement. Growth is picking up in markets across the world. Employees matter more than ever. Workforces are now a complex mix of … Continue reading 5 predictions about Employee Engagement in 2015

Employee Alignment-Zone: “The Time Element”

The Architect – Precisely. As you are undoubtedly gathering, the anomaly is systemic, creating fluctuations in even the most simplistic equations.  Neo – Choice. The problem is choice. (Matrix Reloaded, 2003) On this blog and in quite a few conversations, I have pointed out the risks of overtly relying on cohorts or grouping of employees to … Continue reading Employee Alignment-Zone: “The Time Element”

Impact of Role Relevance-Competence Fit on Engagement

Every hour and every day I'm learning more/The more I learn, the less I know about before/The less I know, the more I want to look around/Digging deep for clues on higher ground (Higher Ground, UB40) In my post yesterday I talked about the ABC Drivers of Intrinsic Motivation. (Achievement, Belief and Camaraderie). A sense … Continue reading Impact of Role Relevance-Competence Fit on Engagement

The Impact of A$s*@!#% on Organizational Performance

The Indian media is at present abuzz with discussions around the 'Rohtak sisters'. That video, of two fragile looking girls lashing out at men who tried to harass them on a bus (while other passengers just sat there watching them) - got me thinking about the effect of another kind of harassment – workplace bullying. At … Continue reading The Impact of A$s*@!#% on Organizational Performance

DIY Employee Engagement Surveys (Part 2): Moving beyond Analysis Paralysis

Congratulations! You have completed the task of designing and rolling out the survey. It has been a hectic few days while you kept things going smoothly. Now the posters and mailers exhorting people to tell what they really feel are pulled down. The entire organization has stepped up and answered the questions diligently over the … Continue reading DIY Employee Engagement Surveys (Part 2): Moving beyond Analysis Paralysis

DIY Employee Engagement Surveys: Bootstrapping your way to insights. (Part 1)

Tell me what's on your mind/ What you feel, what do you believe/What is inside you that makes you scream? / There's something I need to say before you walk away – Tell Me, Failed Flight The very first (and sometimes the only thing) most organizations do when they embark on the Employee Engagement journey … Continue reading DIY Employee Engagement Surveys: Bootstrapping your way to insights. (Part 1)

Estimating the cost of employee engagement: A Leader’s Guide.

You stole my money honey/You're cold your blood's stopped running/And know you're buying your new life/Can't help but find you funny: You Stole My Money Honey, Stereophonics Companies worldwide agree that they are paying the price for having disengaged employees on their workforce. But what is often not clear is the extent of impact disengaged employees … Continue reading Estimating the cost of employee engagement: A Leader’s Guide.

Mindlessness: Its impact on Employee Well-being and Performance

mind·less    (mndls) adj. Giving or showing little attention or care; heedless If you have been unlucky enough to work with a supervisor who seems to be miles away when you approach him for help or clarity with an issue or maybe worse one who nods off or keeps checking his phone in the middle … Continue reading Mindlessness: Its impact on Employee Well-being and Performance

People to Algorithms: “Back Off. We want to make our decisions!”

“It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.” from the Terminator (1984) Analytics is the hottest, absolutely-must-have corporate buzzword these days. Out with the fuzzy and in with hard data. Leaders and Managers have … Continue reading People to Algorithms: “Back Off. We want to make our decisions!”

3 Strategic Axes of Employee Engagement that Leaders must focus on

Considering the impact that disengagement can have on innovation, profitability, customers, and attrition it is clear that top leadership focus on employee engagement is as important (if not more) as on revenue and bottom-line. But more often than not a discussion on Employee Engagement veers towards the operational aspects. The focus is on What to … Continue reading 3 Strategic Axes of Employee Engagement that Leaders must focus on

Halloween Special: Scary Myths about Employee Engagement

It's Halloween time again. I see children in my apartment block all excited about the sugar rush they will get tomorrow. While we wait for all the mischievous goblins and vampires to come knocking, I thought it would be interesting to take a fun look at some of the popular (and scary) myths about employee … Continue reading Halloween Special: Scary Myths about Employee Engagement

Disengaged Workforce? Maybe your CEO’s pay has something to do with it!

"It's a very personal, a very important thing. Hell, it's a family motto. Are you ready, Jerry? I'm ready. I wanna make sure you're ready, brother. Here it is: Show me the money. Oh-ho-ho! SHOW! ME! THE! MONEY! A-ha-ha! Jerry, doesn't it make you feel good just to say that! Say it with me one … Continue reading Disengaged Workforce? Maybe your CEO’s pay has something to do with it!

Murmuration: Infosys gets its employee (re)engagement strategy right!

I got something to tell you / I got something to say I'm gonna put this dream in motion / Never let nothing stand in my way When the going gets tough / The tough get going I'm gonna get myself 'cross the river / That's the price I'm willing to pay I'm gonna make … Continue reading Murmuration: Infosys gets its employee (re)engagement strategy right!

Rise of ERGs as an Employee Engagement Initiative.

Joseph Wilson is an unlikely name to be associated with Employee Engagement. Yet the founder of the Xerox Corporation is often credited with having founded the first Employee Resource Group (of sorts). Back in 1968, when violent race riots were tearing apart parts of America, Wilson wrote a letter to his managers, calling for an … Continue reading Rise of ERGs as an Employee Engagement Initiative.

Employee Engagement is Hogwash!

If you agree that all this noise about Employee Engagement is nothing but people falling for a fad, then I am sure you agree the following concepts are nonsense too: Providing a secure and comfortable workspace for your employees. Building a culture supportive of innovation and new ideas. Being respectful of others’ ideas. Encouraging teamwork. … Continue reading Employee Engagement is Hogwash!

Inferno: 9 Circles of Employee Engagement Hell.

Non è sanza cagion l'andare al cupo: (Not causeless is this journey to the abyss) - Canto VII, Inferno, Dante Alighieri We often get to read about progressive companies that invest in and also get their employee engagement strategies right. But rarely do we talk about companies that don’t get it quite so right. It … Continue reading Inferno: 9 Circles of Employee Engagement Hell.

[Video] The Lying Org-Chart

We have a new video up on the kwenchEngage! YouTube channel called "The Lying Org-Chart".  Take a look. A quick introduction to the power of Social Networks within organizations and how it can be unleashed to achieve better collaboration and also increase employee engagement. References for content used in the video: "How Org Charts Lie", … Continue reading [Video] The Lying Org-Chart

Time, Love and Tenderness at the workplace.

So you say that you can't go on / Love Work left you cryin'/ And you say all your hope is gone/And what's the use in tryin'/What you need is to have some faith/Shake off those sad blues/Get yourself a new view (Time,Love and Tenderness; Michael Bolton) I took some liberties with Bolton’s lyrics and … Continue reading Time, Love and Tenderness at the workplace.

Remote Working and Employee (dis)Engagement?

"WFH!" came the terse reply from an engineer I had asked for a time to meet up and go over a rather tricky problem. The engineer in question worked for a large telecom company and I was then working for an IT services firm where “working from home” was severely frowned upon. Today that large … Continue reading Remote Working and Employee (dis)Engagement?

Webinar: Social Learning, A relevant approach to making it happen (22 Feb, 11am)

Key Topics Covered: Social Learning– Need to know or Good to know? · Top three trends of Social Learning – 2014 · Social Learning – Means or End? · Social Learning is only for techies – Not really! · Connect, Create & Brand! The Speaker: Mr Alok Narain (Executive Vice President, Quatrro Global Services) The … Continue reading Webinar: Social Learning, A relevant approach to making it happen (22 Feb, 11am)

Annual Performance Reviews – All Noise, No Signal

Back in university when I was busy studying communication theory, the one thing we obsessed over was the SNR or Signal-to-Noise ratio. The professor in charge of teaching us the nuances of what was quite a difficult topic, used to rate the pop-quizzes he gave us on a range of zero to one in increments … Continue reading Annual Performance Reviews – All Noise, No Signal

Increase the shadow of the future (among other things)

Before you hand out the badges and thank-you's to all your hard working employees this week (You do engage with them, don't you?), take a pause and think if you might actually be doing it all wrong! Yes you should recognize (and reward) your employees for the hard work they do, for putting in exemplary … Continue reading Increase the shadow of the future (among other things)

Rewards that go boink! (or the folly of cash as an incentive)

Mark Hanna:   The name of the game, move the money from your client’s pocket into your pocket. Jordan Belfort:   But if you can make your clients money at the same time it’s advantageous to everyone, correct? Mark Hanna:   No (Dialogue from the movie ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, 2013) I have an article on how … Continue reading Rewards that go boink! (or the folly of cash as an incentive)

Join the VLZ Webinar on ‘Leveraging Social Media for Employee Engagement’

Sign up for the 1st Virtual Learning Zone (VLZ) in 2014 where we will explore the topic of Leveraging Social  Media for Employee Engagement. To register click hereThe Speaker:Anand PillaiSenior Vice President and Chief Learning Officer,Reliance Industries Limited. About the session:In-house social platforms can help build new approaches to collaboration, co-creation, and act as a crucial … Continue reading Join the VLZ Webinar on ‘Leveraging Social Media for Employee Engagement’

Sorry, but we are different!

‘Yes but... we are different’ is an excuse I hear quite often when managers are confronted with the challenge of making radical changes. (or sometimes even not so radical ones) A typical conversation about focusing on increasing collaboration and lowering barriers revolves around these lines: Yes, we know collaboration is key to innovation, but… - … Continue reading Sorry, but we are different!

n:gage November 2013 – The Challenge!

    It was 8 am on bright sunny day in Bangalore, the city which FastVid called home. Mahesh was in early, in-spite of a late night conference call with his Sales heads in Singapore and Los Angeles. In fact it was the call that was bothering Mahesh. His company was starting to stagnate. The … Continue reading n:gage November 2013 – The Challenge!