Brand Engagement

Moving Engagement From Buzzword to Implementation


A recent column by New York Times writer Tony Schwartz, demonstrates what happens when a field shifts from concept to practice. Schwartz, with whom we have never had any contact, is also an early proponent of the concept of engagement as demonstrated by his book, “The Power of Full Engagement,” published 12 years ago. Interestingly, he notes that the concept of employee engagement requires an “entire overhaul,” when I would argue it hasn’t yet begun.

Ironically, his own reasoning proves it. His article claims that employee engagement is leading to burnout. Schwartz writes: “What companies really need to measure is not how engaged their employees are, but rather how consistently energized they feel. That means focusing not just on inspiring them and giving them opportunities to truly add value in the world, but also on caring for them and providing sufficient time to rest and refuel.”

As anyone who knows our Enterprise Engagement framework understands, no company sincerely focused on engagement would do anything to foster burnout, because that would undermine several of the essential levers of engagement: a sense off support, positive feelings about an organization and fun.

This is great advice, but organizations need more than great advice. As noted in the Conference Board’s recent DNA of Engagement white paper, they need a formal engagement strategy.


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