'Engagement' is a misused word in business. According to the Oxford Dictionary it is the "agreement to get married or an arrangement to do something or go somewhere at a fixed time". In business 'engagement' now appears to mean a generic state of mind or feeling that can be compared to that of employees in other organisations. Surveys that measure this can help an organisation look good to stakeholders, and they have real value where they show trends or differences between areas and over time. This is an indication of problems that merit investigation. However, this is not about the engagement of employees to do what you need them to do or go where you need them to go. Surveys are not about engagement. Our engagement assessment IS about true engagement - "are your employees/leaders willing to do what will be required and if not WHY not"!
Our assessment of engagement will tell you if your employees are aligned to the 'direction and meaning' the leadership aspires to. Do they agree with why you exist, why change is needed, who the customers are, what matters most, where you are going, how you intend to get there, what are the priorities, responsibilities, measures of success, what behaviour is demanded in the culture you desire etc. If material issues of misalignment are identified Foundation Stones will identify why they are misaligned AND what it will take to align them. We will provide rapid and robust insight into what it will take for your people to deliver sustained high performance.
Our engagement assessment can be used for any group of employees with a clear leader, who is able to confirm the direction and context against which we need to assess engagement.
As with all of our products, context provides the foundation. We start by gathering the context from the leader of the team and the key influencers in that top team; what is the change they want to make? What is the true/dominant strategy? What do you want your employees to be engaged in doing? That context will include the leaders vision for success, desired success factors, strategic priorities and a deep understanding of the customers they are serving. The clearer and more aligned the leadership team are, the better the context will be and therefore the more valuable the assessment of engagement will be. Therefore, we recommend that if required our clients start with the Leadership Alignment assessment, and if relevant followed by the Extended Leadership alignment assessment.
Our consultants would then sit down and have 1-2-1 'safe' conversations with a statistically significant number of employees from all relevant groups including leaders, middle managers, first line managers and front line staff. The consultants use a unique process and bespoke technology to guide them through a number of carefully choreographed conversations. They capture their judgements on the system and make notes of material issues identified. This process, developed and proven over a number of years, minimises the subjectivity inherent in making judgements and maximises the robustness of the insight.
We measure the 5 'levels of engagement (or alignment)' for every one of the 68 primary drivers:
1. Not engaged
2. not fully agreed or engaged
Our consultants will provide a report 'playing back' your context. This is a very valuable process for any leader. The opportunity to confidentially, in complete safety, spend quality time being challenged on and confirming what they really need from their people. What they really need them engaged in feeling, thinking and doing. This 'Context Report' does not need to be shared with anybody other than the consultants assessing the engagement to it. The leader can decide who else sees it. The consultants never ask direct questions and never discuss the specific context given by the leader. For example, we would 'chat' about what they are currently focused on, we would never ask questions like "do you agree with the following areas of focus". Our consultants, having heard what they are actually focused on, can then make the judgement on how engaged they are on what they leader wanted them to be focused on.
Following the 1-2-1 conversations the FS Consultants will feedback, via a report and presentation, how engaged their employees are, why they are not engaged on the material issues and what it would take to re-engage them.
The whole process can be delivered in days or weeks depending on size of area to be assessed.