There is a lot spoken about engagement at present. Most executives realise that stronger engagement will drive profitability and organisational growth. Based on our research at Apricot Consulting through our Smart Culture Index (SCI) data conducted across multiple industries, it has shown that perhaps we are emphasising the wrong activities to drive engagement. This is particularly true in the Millennial segment where we find the lowest engagement scores. While bring your dog to work days, higher pay, BBQs, mental health days, promoting one off social causes, and volunteering are just some activities used to drive engagement, we have found that defining and refining the organisational purpose is perhaps one of the most critical activities any company can do to drive engagement. Interestingly, it is shown that companies who understand their purpose, for example Not For Profits (NFPs), typically pay 10% less than For Profits. The reason is pretty obvious: people align themselves to the purpose of those organisations above that of any material benefits.
This is in stark contrast to the attempt to make engagement all about the employee. Rather there is opportunity to align the purpose of the organisation to the employee. From a marketing perspective Simon Sinek defines this as the ‘why’ and not just the ‘what.’ In simple terms, defining an organisation’s purpose is asking ‘What do we want to be known for?’
We have found that purpose-driven companies creatively explore their purpose. For example, Shared Value programs have proven to be effective ways to enhance purpose.
If you want to drive engagement in your company then perhaps the first step is to review your purpose and then ensure that each member of the company understands their role in achieving the purpose.
Apricot is well equipped to help your company define and execute on its purpose