Is “fully engaged” enough? Is it truly the apex of employee satisfaction? Many organizations measure aspects of employee engagement in an effort to impact their bottom line. It’s usually captured through a 3-5-point Likert scale questioning employees on their thoughts relative to the work, their management and their organization with ratings ranging from “this pretty much sucks” to “I’m feeling awesome!”
What if we could actually capture a measure that lies beyond engagement —the moments spent working in the FLOW where we are fully immersed and engaged in the work we are doing?
Going with the flow
Think about those times outside of work when you were doing something so enjoyable, so challenging yet required great focus and concentration. Maybe you slip into your state of flow when you’re running, enjoying a favorite hobby, or reading. For me, it’s kayaking,
Play along with me here — imagine a senior executive informing one of his departmental leaders that he’s been identified to participate in an assessment process. Tiny beads of sweat start to form as the leader realizes that his professional reputation will be cast open to judgment, possibly subjecting him to a walk of atonement once his assessment results are put on display. With little understanding of what lies ahead, the leader is already dreading the assessment process.
The question that lingered in the mind of the leader is one that is commonly asked by anyone involved in the employee assessment process. For example, I recently participated in a leadership assessment certification process with a small group of talent management professionals. On the second day of the certification program, the group wanted to grapple with the question before we could continue moving forward: “Who owns the feedback from the assessment?” Not in terms of who covers the costs for the instrument; but rather, who has visibility to the feedback and what actions can (and shouldn’t) be driven from its results?