Look at your body. Notice every pore and every hair, pay attention to every curve. Now, zoom in. Imagine passing through your skin and seeing what’s underneath. Blood running through the veins, your bones, your digestive system, your beating heart. Zoom even deeper. Zoom to the smallest cells.
Each of those cells has its purpose. Each has the job it does. It’s a small biological machine that does specific tasks in order to keep your whole body alive and well.
What if one cell stops doing its job? Probably the organism as a whole won’t be impacted that much. Others would be ready to help.
But what if that cell starts spreading the same attitude to other cells? A rogue cell reprogramming everything around it, cancer, eating through the body.
Now, scale it up. Human bodies have 100 000 billion cells. How many people are there in your organization? Twenty? A hundred? A thousand? Roughly every teammate correlates to a trillion cells. Just one cell, gone bad, can start a reaction that would kill the whole body. What if a trillion goes bad?
People are at the core of every single process in every organization. And just as ignoring cancer is mortally dangerous, not paying attention to disengagement of your team is life-threatening.
People have the biggest impact on all of the business and product metrics of the company. And how crazy it is that among a shitload of data every business tracks and analyzes, its own team’s well-being is largely ignored?
No wonder only 13% of people at work are engaged when the majority of others are not. And 24% of workers are actively disengaged, which basically means they don’t give a fuck about their company and spread that negativity around.
That’s because an engaged teammate gives a damn. It’s an engineer who works over the weekends on a side project to promote the company they work for. It’s a designer that goes through countless iterations to find the perfect solution. It’s a policeman on patrol who checks out every side alley even if his shift is close to the end. Being engaged means giving a fuck about the work you do and the company you work for.
There is nothing surprising that an engaged teammate is more productive, builds a better product and helps the customers out much better, which leads to more sales and more profits and an awesome organization overall. For example, according to IBM Research engaged companies have five times higher returns over five years
Teammate engagement is the most important problem facing every company. And probably the only way to solve it is to actually give a fuck about your team and each and every individual that is a part of it. That’s how awesome companies get built.