Summary of The Art of Engagement

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Rating

8

Qualities

  • Applicable

Recommendation

Organizational leaders spend considerable time and effort carefully developing strategies to advance their corporate goals. However, they often fail to communicate these strategies compellingly to their employees – the people who must execute every step. Therefore, it is no surprise that most such strategies fail. Management consultant Jim Haudan recommends a strategy-sharing approach using visuals, metaphors and stories to engage employees. He offers tactics for getting them on board to execute your strategy and organizational directives. One negative: Many of the illustrations (reductions from original table-size artwork) are busy and even fuzzy. Some feature tiny text, which illustrates – in the breech – Haudan’s point about using clear visuals to communicate and engage. Otherwise the book is superior, very insightful and nicely written. Haudan uses case studies to demonstrate the effectiveness of his employee engagement process. getAbstract believes leaders can benefit from learning his tactics for communicating strategies so employees understand them, support them and actually implement them.

About the Author

Jim Haudan is co-founder and CEO of Root Learning, a management-consulting firm.

 

Summary

The Engagement Imperative

Consider this lesson in contrasts: think of a baseball game versus an office. At the game, people are enthused and excited. They cheer. They clap. They are engaged. This is hardly the scene at the typical office. Okay, so huzzahs and applause rarely fit in at work, but shouldn’t employees at least be engaged in their jobs? Indeed they should. So, why aren’t they? Numerous reasons exist. For example, managers do not explain the big picture, so employees do not feel like a part of the process. They just aren’t sure that their contributions, opinions and efforts make a difference. They think they are simply along for the ride.

These thoughts and feelings are roadblocks to meaningful change. That’s why a new strategic push at the typical company often goes nowhere once it leaves the executive suite. When a strategic imperative is meaningless to your employees, they won’t get behind it. Leaders plan and develop strategy, but employees execute it. They are the “true engines of business.” Without employee buy-in, the most exciting new strategy will be dead on arrival. To make your new strategy work, engage your employees so they take full ownership...


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    C. H. 3 years ago
    I found the summary on "The Art of Engagement" to be informative regarding how to generate associate engagement around organizational strategy. Of the 6 roadblocks to engagement listed, the 4th really caught my attention, “I can’t be engaged if I don’t see the big picture.” Communicating the big picture can often be overlooked by leaders seeking the buy-in of those they are leadiing. It reminds me of the Broadridge Journey visual associated with the "Living Our Values" course. As the author Haudan mentions, a picture truly is worth 1,000 words. Using "effective" visuals more frequently to communicate key messages can have a lasting impact on engagement.