General Engagement: THE POWER OF VIDI

General Engagement:


By Catherine Bernales


Susan L. and Emma S. are both marketing consultants. They live in the same city, studied in the same university, but work in different companies. While their jobs seem to be very similar, the truth is that they are quite far from having the same levels of engagement at work.

Susan works in an international company and earns a competitive salary. Her organisation provides her regular training opportunities and promotion prospects. On the contrary, Emma is part of a small team in a young company. She earns an average salary, has low training opportunities and her office is old and a bit cramped. However, her organisation owns a strong corporate culture.

Although Susan’s levels of job satisfaction are apparently much higher than Emma’s, the truth is that they are not. She’s completely discouraged and self-perpetuated in a cycle of low morale. Nevertheless, her lack of motivation represents nothing new these days. In fact, she’s part of the 87% of people who express low workplace engagement at work. Even worth, only 13% of employees in the world are engaged according to the State of the Global Workplace Survey (2013) from Gallup World, a management consultancy.

Conversely, the case of Emma is rather different. She feels completely engaged, with a great disposition to support the company’s culture and enough confident to self-manage. In a nutshell, Emma is totally VIDI.

But what does VIDI means? According to Andrew Leigh, the author of Ethical Leadership Creating and sustaining and ethical business culture, VIDI is a useful approach that affects the levels of general engagement. When employees feel Valued, Involved, Developed and Inspired they are more likely to stay in their organisations and become fully engaged with ethical issues.

Whist it is undeniable that it is hard for leaders to maintain high levels of engagement in their teams, the concept of VIDI offers some practical guidelines for leaders.

Being Valued: Make your employees feel worthwhile and wanted

good job and well done

Showing that you VALUE people means that you understand them. In other words, leaders must learn to convey the message that makes employees valued.

“When I started running my own company I discovered that paying attention to what people says and actively listen to their ideas, reinforce the message that you care about them”, said M. Paz M. Marketing Manager at Webit Communications. She also thought that as she was usually involved in time-consuming tasks, she didn’t have the time to contact her employees frequently. She decided to set up some scheduled visits to her staff. “Not only I saw them more regularly, but I also started to encourage them to contact me for their concerns. In response, I tried to give them positive answers and public credit for contributions”, she said.

But even the simple “how are you feeling today” or using a positive language like “that was really useful”, can make your staff feel needed.

Being involved: Let your employees voice their views

When it comes to make your employees feel INVOLVED don’t hesitate to let them express their views and ideas. They need to feel part of their organisations. For instance, the retailer M&S has a network called the Business Involvement Group (BIG) in which people can communicate their ideas and get feedback. Through this programme, the company informs, involves and have the chance to consults its employees on the issues that affect them.

Similarly, the global communications company, BT, runs a programme which reduces CO2 emissions and protect the environment. They have set up a framework for “Carbon Clubs”, a creative space that give employees the opportunity to brainstorm thoughts and innovative projects. Currently, BT has 130 clubs around the world.

Being developed: Help your employees to fulfil their values

The opportunity to be developed directly influences engagement levels. Leaders should create a personal development plan for their workforce that can emerge from evolved discussions with them. In this line, it is interesting to motivate your employees to follow their own schedules, rather than imposing targets. However, try to make sure that these goes in accordance to your aims and values.

A research from Blessing White has showed that development can certainly reduce the turnover rates. The study named Navigating Ambiguity: Career Research Report 2014, has concluded that employees “need to make the most of their skills, fulfil their values and over time build a career journey that gets them to where they want to be — and where the organization needs them to be. Such skills and experience are developed through on-the-job experience and formal or informal learning”.

 Being inspired: Feel passion of what you really love

These days, unfortunately the majority of employees feel disengaged. Take the example of the UK, in which only 17% of the people are engaged, 57% are not and 26% is actively disengaged (Gallup Survey, 2013).

Based on this, it is clear that the roles of leaders and inspiration have become a crucial matter. Before inspiring others, leaders have to be sincere and recognise how inspired they are. A passionate leader can drive engagement and positively affect people in an emotional way. Thus, it is essential for them to refine their inspiring skills and renew their energy. Although it can be complex, sharing uninspired feelings with close colleagues or taking up outside coaching might be more than helpful. Check these excellent inspiring tips of the founder of Virgin Group, Richard Branson of how to energise your employees and remember: Find what you love…

You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle…” (Steve Jobs)

About Catherine Bernales

I'm a super enthusiastic journalist who loves to write, post and comment articles with people from different backgrounds. I love to read, write interviews, create debates and exchange new ideas!

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