Curing the Sunday Blues

Managing for Employee Engagement

by Bradford Glaser, HRDQ President & CEO

The “Sunday Blues.” Jobs that rob people of their energy and self-esteem or make them cynical and unhappy. Low morale and high turnover. That’s what job misery is all about.Gallup recently reported some staggering statistics on the subject. Did you know that more than 75% of people are in miserable jobs? I didn’t. And it also shocked me to find out that job misery has cost employers a whopping $350 million in lost productivity!

I know my organization can’t afford miserable jobs. And yours can’t, either.

As part of the training and development community, you’re probably familiar with Patrick Lencioni, the popular speaker and bestselling author of many books, including The Five Dysfunctions of a Team and Getting Naked. Now he’s introduced Managing for Employee Engagement, a powerful new training package that includes a whole slew of tools for tackling job misery, including a manager’s assessment, workshop, workbook, book, poster, and companion DVD.

Based on his book The Three Signs of a Miserable Job, Lencioni identifies just three underlying causes of the job misery epidemic:

  • Anonymity: Employees feel unknown or invisible at work.
  • Irrelevance: Employees sense the work they are doing has no impact.
  • Immeasurement: Employees are unable to measure their contributions or success.

So if these seemingly simple “Three Signs” are the culprits, it shouldn’t be too hard to eliminate job misery, right? Not so fast.

While it may sound straightforward—even obvious—Lencioni argues that most managers fail to provide employees with what they need to satisfy and retain employees because they’re too busy, unaware, or don’t know how.

As training professionals and business owners, it’s our responsibility to help managers prevent or eliminate the causes of job misery by teaching them how to successfully engage, motivate, and retain employees. And that’s exactly what Managing for Employee Engagement does.

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