Badconsultant does a LOT of work on culture and colleague engagement. Which involves surveys, and measurement, and frameworks, and systemic change, and… er… avoidance, denial, recrimination, anger, rapprochement and… well…
silliness. Just plain, simple silliness.
Like the leader who, taking the guidance that ‘leaders embody the culture’, comes to believe themselves an Incan high priest on the high pyramid, slaughtering sheep and young virgins so as to pronounce that…
WE EMPOWER COLLEAGUES!
[Badconsultant whole-heartedly apologizes for the inadvertent use of the ‘E’ word and takes no liability for possible downstream consequences… Though we will be happy to submit a statement of work to fix them]
And in the saying, believing that the words have become reality.
Like the manager who will obsess about survey results for a year, agonizing over what possible meaning can be gleaned from the data, all the while hearing the suggestion to simply ask people what’s important to them and what would make a difference, yet clinging to the notion that somehow there is an answer that must be given to people.
Manager play-acting the role of high priest, I guess.
Engagement doesn’t come in a box, it can’t be given, it can’t be manufactured. It’s something you solicit and nurture, not build and provide.
And how ironic is it that people who most often ask “How do I grow engagement?” are those least likely to simply engage with people?
So, let us argue the questions, let us argue the theory, let us deny that the people around us are human beings who have feelings, thoughts, cares, whims and neuroses. Let us believe that people are non-chaotic, cookie-cutter-cut-outs who respond to stimulus like pavlovian dogs.
Let us live in beautiful, blissful denial.
[ready for it]
What is the ‘best friend’ question all about, anyway?