DISCOVERY - the TWO REASONS 70% of employees are DISENGAGED

According to Gallop 70% of workers are disengaged in their work (65% of managers).  Disengaged workers, view their jobs as an exchange of time for a paycheck. They arrive and leave on time, take their breaks, never volunteer for extra work or projects, and do little else in between beyond the minimal effort. They show little passion or creativity for their jobs and go through the motions. (UNC Executive Development)

Last week I spent time thinking about the REAL REASONS for 70% of employees being disengaged in their work.   I explored why aren’t more people actively engaged in finding ways to work smarter, faster and more creatively.  My learning was powered by…

    • Qualitative feedback from participants at a Leadership Class last week 

    • Qualitative observation of a group of investors starting a new company

    • Quantitative review of Innovation Engineering historical data 

    • Quantitative feedback from surveys from a webinar on innovation leadership practices.  

Quite simply the TWO REASONS people are DISENGAGED is….

  1. They don’t know HOW to engage.   Only 17% of managers know HOW to create new ideas and make them happen in their work / life.   Encouragingly, 70% are WILLING to innovate.   This conflict high willingness and low ability is a FAILURE of our education systems - AT SCHOOL and AT WORK.  And of these the greatest blame must go to the training AT WORK.    Looking back, the courses I took on campus provided 30% of my business education - the formal courses and on the job coaching I received at Procter & Gamble in Brand Management were 70% of my education.  

Indicated Action: Companies need to take responsibility for training and developing their people.   Leadership needs to stop whining about Millennials and start focusing time and energy on educating every employee in HOW to engaged in what ever you want to call it - innovation, new ideas, change or never ending continuous improvement.   

  1. They don’t know WHERE to engage.   This finding “blew my mind.”  Only 20% of managers understand their company’s strategic plan for improving/changing/innovating on “how they work” and/or ”improving their offerings.”   Even if they new HOW to engage they don’t know WHERE to engage.  It is “assumed” that everyone knows what to do.  When you don’t know WHERE you are supposed to be innovating then you don’t see it as part of your job.  Thus the 70% DISENGAGED.

Indicated Action: We need to leverage the awesome power of strategy by activating it at every level of our organizations.  To make this happen we need to educate management and top leadership in the use of “Commander’s Intent” (used by NATO, Canadian and US Military) as the means for activating strategy all the way to the front lines.   Within Innovation Engineering we teach, coach and implement this through what we call cascading BLUE CARDS.


A PLAN — For Working Smarter RIGHT NOW - Everyone, Everywhere, Every Day!

Step 1: EDUCATE:  We offer courses to help employees and senior leaders.  Here’s the schedule of open enrollment courses coming up 

CINCINNATI - Innovation Engineering QUICK START (Blue Belt)- Nov. 14-16

KANSAS CITY - Innovation Engineering QUICK START (Blue Belt) - Nov. 14-16

TORONTO - Innovation Engineering QUICK START (Blue Belt) - Nov. 21-22 

EDINBURGH - Innovation Engineering QUICK START (Blue Belt)- Nov. 22-24

CINCINNATI - Innovation Engineering LEADERSHIP (Silver Belt)- Dec. 4-6

Step 2: ALIGNMENT: We teach and coach the application of cascading Blue Cards to enable everyone to know WHERE to engage.  The process is clear, simple and delivers near instant ROI for the time invested in learning and implementing it. 

Step 3: RECOGNIZE: Education and alignment ignites engagement.  To turn engagement into a cultural movement requires the leadership engage by recognizing and encouraging the transformation.  We enable this through an on line IELabs portal that painlessly quantifies engagement and the value of the contributions.

To learn more call us directly at +1 513 271 9911 in the USA.