filed under Vertical Collaboration

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How Feedback Loops Are Like the Corporate Information Nervous System

Our central nervous system plays a critical role in sending important information from the body to the brain. The brain, in turn, sends information back to the body to take the appropriate action.  This feedback loop between body and brain is critical to an organism’s survival. Similarly, organizations need important information to flow between employees and leadership. This feedback loop is also critical to the organization’s survival. However, this is largely broken in many mid to large sized organizations.  Read more

filed under Engagement

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What Should Replace the Employee Engagement Survey?

It’s time to rethink the employee engagement issue. The change we need to make is to redefine engagement beyond an annual HR measure to a continuous, holistic part of an entire business strategy. Here a couple things we all know:

So if the employee engagement survey is dying, but employee engagement is critical to performance, what should we measure?

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filed under Engagement

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How Employee Feedback Impacts Engagement

Employees who receive helpful, continuous feedback from managers not only work better and are more motivated, but they’re also much more engaged.

A survey conducted by leadership trainers Zenger Folkman that looked into the feedback practices of 22,000 leaders around the world found that leaders who scored in the top 10 percent on giving feedback had employees who were three times more engaged than employees with leaders scoring in the bottom 10 percent. Unsurprisingly, the study also revealed that the bottom 10 percent of leaders had employees who were three times more likely to think about quitting.

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filed under Innovation

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Types of Innovation

In an earlier post we covered how we define innovation and in another we covered the dangers of getting too caught up in all the disruptive innovation buzz. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the different types of innovation, so we’d like to offer a framework to help make things easier. There are a couple of ways we find useful to categorize different types of innovation. We like to look at the types of ideas, the source of ideas, participants in the innovation process, and the focus of innovation. Read more

filed under Engagement

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What Chocolate Chip Cookies Teach You About Employee Engagement

Scientists at Stanford were the first to discover a correlation between willpower and success. Further studies a few decades later uncovered that not only is it correlated with success, but that willpower is a muscle that can be fatigued. The implications of this in the workplace are significant. One 2010 study at a manufacturing plant in Ohio found that by addressing factors that taxed willpower, assembly line workers increased productivity at the plant by twenty percent within two months. How did they help these workers bring more of their willpower to the job? They gave them more control.  Read more

filed under Innovation

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Manufacturing Creativity: Good Ideas on Demand

Research shows that there is a difference between people who are creative and people who aren’t. However, the good news is that creativity is something that can be learned and improved on. All you need is a little awareness of key ingredients necessary  to develop processes, habits and a culture that fosters creativity. Read more

filed under Engagement

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Engaging and Motivating Employees: Reward vs Recognition

The challenge of motivating employees to perform to their full potential is one that every workplace faces. Managers can feel that their staff would be more productive if they were more committed, while employees typically feel overworked and undervalued. So what are the best methods to increase employee engagement and encourage them to bring their full selves to work every day? Looking specifically at rewards or recognition, which is better? The answer of course is that it depends.

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filed under Innovation

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What Innovation Actually Means

When was the last time you saw the word innovation? Ten minutes ago? The fact is, there are many different types of innovation but they’ve all been bucketed into one big category. In other words, many people struggle with what innovation means.

We’re here to help.

We believe that ideas fall on a scale that looks like this: Read more