Daily Quote: Secret On Increasing Employee Engagement


Daily Quote: When people know we truly care about them—and not just about what we can get out of them—they tend to go the extra mile.

Reflection: Recently, I was pondering the lack of engagement and dis-satisfaction of employees at their workplaces. According to a 2014 Aon Hewitt survey, only 61% of worldwide workers said they feel engaged at their jobs. Why aren’t the numbers higher? Boredom, authoritarian management styles and lack of respect and trust are the usual culprits for these negative attitudes.

Self-Coaching: Over the next week checkout how your employees are feeling about their jobs and make a plan based on their input how to put mor joy and fun into the workplace. This effort would be appreciated and I promise will improve everyone’s “quality of worklife.

Click through to this insightful article on workplace satisfaction.




Attention Small Business Owners: Solving the Customer Satisfaction Problem

Part II: MESSAGE FOR Small Business Owners– Want more satisfied customers treat your employees better.

My second posting for modern day managers and small business owners is based on the latest research on best practices and my consulting experiences gain over 40 years of observing and working on customer care projects for both businesses large and small.

Solving the Problem of Customer Satisfaction–Satisfy your employees first.

Most business leaders are always looking for ways to increase customer satisfaction and thereby increase their chances of being successful. The place overlooked most often is right under their nose–BE MORE RESPECTFUL, KIND, AND FAIR TO THEIR MOST VALUABLE CUSTOMER THEIR EMPLOYEES. 

It is my belief that most workers try to do their best do an assignment or task. Yet trying to do it just the way the boss wants it done is exhausting. Focusing on a sense of pleasing the boss takes effort and jeopardizes self-initiative, morale of workers, and quality service. Here are some of the questions bosses need to answer when contemplating this issue: Do I really understand  my employee needs and create an environment were workers are motivated and reward for doing things right? Do I show appreciation for workers making the effort  or taking the initiative for making the customers experience the best it can be? Do I put in place rules or policies that support employee empowerment and autonomy to make decisions on the spot to make the customers experience memorable and satisfying? Do you leave room for employees to make and learn from mistakes? Are they doing it the way I want it done rather than what the customer needs and wants ? Are they staying late to complete their task or just punching the clock because they don’t feel ownership for making the business a success ? Is enough being done to create a more engaged and responsive work place environment based based on adult to adult relationship rather than a critical-parent to child one?

Part I: Message for Leaders– Don’t Micro-manage employees

My view based on consulting with organizations for forty plus years—Problem of Micromanagement. Trying to get people to do an assignment or task your way is exhausting. Focusing on a sense sense of urgency takes effort and jeopardizes self-initiative, morale of workers, and quality service. Are people doing an assignment fast enough?  Are they doing it the way I want it done? Are they staying late to complete their task or just punching the clock? Is enough being done to create a more responsive and productive work place environment?

Micromanagement takes a lot of work and energy in the wrong direction. How about being a constructive boss who respects others opinions and ideas.  If you want things done right and goals reached involve others in the decision-making and make them feel important by sharing in the rewards of success–living wage, bonuses and profit sharing. By building an open and trusting relationship the owner and boss will empower employees. This people first approach will pay dividends in many subtle but powerful ways. This type of respectful approach will build loyalty and help create a team of employees that will in turn show respect to customers and support the organization imperatives of productivity and profitability.  Be careful dismissing this point too quickly — even if you would never micromanage, you could be creating the wrong incentives for people in your organization.

Daily Quote and Reflection: Are you engaged at work?

Daily Quote: “Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” –Theodore Roosevelt


Many studies are reporting the American workforce is not engaged at work. Although, there can be many good reasons for this problem I am convinced that the one place we don’t look is at our ourselves. We externalize the issue by blaming the “bad and insensitive boss”, boring work, work that doesn’t match our skills or strengths, greedy CEO’s, poor products and services, difficult customer, too little pay or benefits, etc.   We can go on and list many more issues for disengagement.

Recently, I came across a message from United Technologies Corporation published in the Wall Street Journal ( part of a series) back in the 1980’s that highlights one of the many issues we forget to mention when talking about “job engagement: “taking pride in our work”.

I take Pride In My Work–author unknown    

I’m a little fed up with the constant criticism of American workmanship.

How other people do their jobs is their business.

But I do good work and I know it.

I have perfected my skills.

I make each minute count.

When I make a mistake I correct it.

I would gladly sign my name to every piece of work I do.

I going to hang this message over my work area to let

my employer, my customers, my co-workers

know that—

I take pride in my work, I take pride…I take pride… 

Self-Coaching Challenge: How engaged are you at work? What are the reasons for your non-engagement?  What are you willing to do to change the situation?

Want to be the next Top Sales person? Learn the secrets of how to Influence others.

“No manipulation, no capitulation—how to bring true influence to everything you do”. Dr. Mark Goulston 

People won’t put up with the “tell and sell” model of selling anymore. If they sense they are being told they need to buy or you push the hard , they are likely to get defensive and their guard goes up and you lose the sale. Even if they do finally give-in and buy or comply, lingering resentment undermines the relationship…maybe forever.

Yet, most books on influence still portray it as something you “do to” someone else to get your way. That out-of-date approach invites resistance or cynicism from those who recognize the techniques. Manipulative tactics might occasionally wear down a colleague’s or client’s resistance, but they fail to produce the mutual trust that sustains successful relationships. In short, they just won’t work in our sophisticated, post-selling world.

In this groundbreaking book, authors Mark Goulston and John Ullmen reveal a new model for authentic influence—the kind that creates a strong initial connection and survives long after agreement has been reached. Their model’s core elements are listening, genuine engagement and commitment to win-win outcomes. In their new book, Get Real Influence  they provide a powerful four-step method you can use to positively influence others:

• Examine your priorities

• Learn about the key players and what they need

• Earn their attention and motivate them to hear more

• Add value with active listening tools such as probing through questions and actions

Complete with examples of the steps in action and insights from real-world “power influencers,” this one-of-a-kind guide shows that being straight with everyone means winning for all.

So what is your style and methods when you are trying tp influence or persuade others?

Daily Quote and Reflection: Work and the Principle of Meaning

Daily Quote and Reflection: It is impossible to have a great life unless it is a meaningful life. And it is very difficult to have a meaningful life without meaningful work. -Jim Collins, Author of Good to Great

Reflection: Have you ever contemplated what is the difference between work and play? Many people when ask to do this reflection say to me –work is work. It doesn’t have anything to do with play. Maybe maybe not I reply. I say what about organizations like  Southwest Airlines (Fun LUVing attitude not just words but real action in creating a family atmosphere and support programs to make communities a better place to live and work. The attitude is made-up of these principles–

  • Have FUN
  • Don’t take yourself too seriously
  • Maintain perspective
  • Celebrate successes
  • Enjoy your work
  • Be a passionate Teamplayer

The essence of work at Southwest Airlines  is  doing good while having fun. Of course there are many other organizations embracing this philosophy of meaning and fun at work like Tom’s of Maine, Zappos, and Patagonia who’s mission is to: Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis..

Let’s brainstorm for a second the characteristics of work vs. play. Work conjectures up characteristics and thoughts of : required activity, pay for results or services, to survive and put a roof over your head, paid to do it, have to, sweat, challenge, bosses, be told what to do and how to do it, how to behave, command and control, schedules, boring, supervision, structured routine, time pressure etc… vs Play– want to, engaged, spontaneity, fun, freedom to choose, smiles, do it because I love the activity, enjoy the people playing with me, time is mine, etc…

So the question becomes how do we put more fun and meaning into work?

Poem on Respect and Responsiveness

Poem on Respect and Responsiveness by M.W. Hardwick

    Idea for poem: Respect and Responsiveness are the keys to employee and customer satisfaction and they seem to be lacking in many organization–for example We can’t do that because of policy.

      R&R is key to brand perception.

      R&R are keys to your ability to look in the mirror. 

      R&R are keys to to leadership effectiveness.

      R&R are keys to long-term relationships and trust.

      R&R are free.

      Embrace and pursue the value of R&R

      R&R require empowerment and empathy…

     Where are they…Where are they…