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Future Engage Deliver


Being engaging can be a challenge:

My older brothers are identical twins and to this day they're impossible to tell apart. When I was about seven years old, I began noticing the pattern of leadership and followership. One brother seemed to have the right stuff. Whatever he suggested, my friends and I would follow automatically going to a game, playing a sport, doing a picnic, going to a movie whatever it was, we followed; whereas when his twin, his double, suggested the same thing, we curiously declined. Nothing happened. It was like acoustical dead space.
I began wondering, "What is the difference between people who seem to have the capacity to enrol people in their vision, and those who don't?" Warren Bennis

But the prize for excelling in this area is huge, as Walter Wriston writes:

The person who figures out how to harness the collective creative genius of the people in his or her organisation is going to blow the competition away. And this takes entirely different skills from what it took to be a manager 15 years ago. You need an ego that permits you to believe that somebody else in your organisation knows something. That's an acquired skill.

Less than 30 percent of American workers are fully engaged at work according to data collected by the Gallup organization in early 2001. Some 55 percent are "not engaged." Another 19 percent are "actively disengaged," meaning not just that they are unhappy at work, but they regularly share those feelings with colleagues.

The costs of a disengaged workforce run into the trillions of dollars. Worse yet, the longer employees stay with organizations, the less engaged they become. Gallup found that after six months on the job, only 38 percent of employees remained engaged. After three years, the figure drops to 22 percent.
Loehr and Schwartz Close
To be fully engaged, we must be physically energised, emotionally connected, mentally focused and spiritually aligned with a purpose beyond our immediate self-interest.

Full engagement begins with feeling eager to work in the morning, equally happy to return home in the evening and capable of clearing boundaries between the two. It means being able to immerse yourself in the mission you are on, whether that is grappling with a creative challenge at work, managing a group of people on a project, spending time with loved ones or simply having fun. Full engagement implies a fundamental shift in the way we live our lives.

Think about your own life. How fully engaged are you at work? What about your colleagues or the people who work for you?
Loehr and Schwartz Close
All of the winning leaders I've studied share a passion for people. They draw their energy from helping others get excited about improving their businesses. And they energize their people at every opportunity with stimulating ideas and values.

Equally important, leaders model the intensity and energy that it takes to stay ahead competitively and meet ever more ambitious goals. In part, they do this because they love what they do. They also know how to keep themselves engaged in what they are doing at the moment. Leaders focus on how they make people feel after each interaction. Carlos Cantu, the CEO of ServiceMaster, may have summarized this best when he said, "At the end of the day, I feel every single person has got to come away with something positive" (from one of his meetings).

This does not mean that leaders aren't truthful. Indeed, they are brutally honest about their business's competitive realities, and they don't sugarcoat their views. But they provide equal parts sobering reality and inspiring exuberance. They offer people self-confidence to pursue the opportunities that change offers.
Noel Tichy Close
Resonant leaders know when to be collaborative and when to be visionary, when to listen and when to command. Such leaders have a knack for attuning to their own sense of what matters and articulating a mission that resonates with the values of those they lead. These leaders naturally nurture relationships, surface simmering issues, and create the human synergies of a group in harmony. They build a fierce loyalty by caring about the careers of those who work for them, and inspire people to give their best for a mission that speaks to shared values.
Goleman, Boyatzis and McKee Close
My objective was to determine which personal capabilities drove outstanding performance within organisations and to what degree they did so. When I calculated the ratio of technical skills, IQ, and emotional intelligence as ingredients of excellent performance, emotional intelligence proved to be twice as important as the others for jobs at all levels.

Moreover, my analysis showed that emotional intelligence played an increasingly important role at the highest levels of the company, where differences in technical skills are of negligible importance. In other words, the higher the rank of a person considered to be a star performer, the more emotional intelligence capabilities showed up as the reason for his or her effectiveness. When I compared star performers with average ones in senior leadership positions, nearly 90% of the difference in their profiles was attributable to emotional intelligence factors rather than cognitive abilities.
Daniel Goleman Close