Attracting, retaining and developing talent is more challenging than ever before. Employee satisfaction is no longer enough, as we enter a new era of transformational engagement.
This shift demands that HR takes an influential, strategic position at the table, armed with engagement data and a firm grasp of what it takes to build a powerful employer brand.
Many business leaders talk about ‘going from good to great’ - and countless strategies have attempted to make this shift happen - but relatively few have succeeded. Why?
The answer is no less complex than the problem. Common barriers include:
Business decisions and goals set at departmental level compete with one another. Success in one area damages another, e.g. higher sales scuppers customer service; or higher manufacturing productivity scuppers distribution. This is due to lack of transparency and silo’d planning processes that don’t emphasise connectivity between each node in the network.
Time and effort invested in strategy is not matched with investment at grass roots level; or in other words, change gets blocked at a specific level in the org structure - where there’s a communication gap, with little information going up nor down. If managers don’t embrace or understand the change, they won’t engage their teams and the change isn’t embedded as business as usual, leading to disappointing results.
Organisations are simply trying to do too much - taking on new projects that spread resources too thinly; leading to project failure, overspend, under-delivery and distraction from the main trajectory, deviating the company further from achieving its most important goals.
- Senior leaders aren't fully commitmented to change and excellence. Settling for adequate employee engagement or adequate service, for instance, stunts transformation plans. If senior leadership perceive new thinking and practices to be a distraction from their core revenue and profit concerns - as opposed to directly contributing to them - game-changing initiatives will fail to gain traction, often dismissed as 'fluffy' or nice-to-have; resulting in the organisation falling behind its competitors.
The talent required to deliver against goals and make projects successful isn’t available, due to underestimating the resource that’s needed to turn a strategy into reality; or underestimating the challenge of acquiring and retaining the best people.
These issues span every level and department; and cannot be solved with the same thinking that was used to create them. Something new is required - a set of practices, tools and knowledge that will serve as glue, aligning the organisation towards clear, inspiring goals; and building energy and relationships to provide the momentum required to deliver.
Welcome transformational engagement - the essence of great companies.
Download the white paper 'Transformational Engagement - a HR Guide' for further detail that isn't covered in this post
Watch our video presentation on Transformational Engagement