After twenty years of trying to get it right, precious few organizations have cracked the code of employee engagement. Why? Because few could have anticipated the unbending nature of what Brady G. Wilson calls “the engagement paradox”: the more companies focus on engagement, the more disengagement they produce.
What causes this paradox?
As shown in this clear, concise, and compelling book, it is simply this: managing engagement turns out to be just another drain on the most precious resource in business today — energy. In today’s exhaustion era, employees are simply struggling to make it to the weekend. Lacking energy, they resort to quick fixes, workarounds, and reactive firefighting, thereby hardwiring depletion into the system.
As a result, employees come to perceive engagement efforts as a management con game. A high percentage of the employee population believe no meaningful outcomes will occur as a result of the engagement survey. And this crisis of belief causes acute pain inside well-intentioned leaders who are doing their best to unlock employee engagement. They feel caught.
Now Beyond Engagement shows how to get beyond this kind of self-defeating engagement: by managing energy rather than engagement. The book offers a chapter each to ten leadership principles based on the findings of brain science:
1 Manage Energy, Not Engagement
2 Deliver Experiences, Not Promises
3 Target Emotion, Not Logic
4 Trust Conversations, Not Surveys
5 Seek Tension, Not Harmony
6 Practice Partnering, Not Parenting
7 Pull Out the Backstory, Not the Action Plan
8 Think Sticks, Not Carrots
9 Meet Needs, Not Scores
10 Challenge Beliefs, Not Emotions