Yesterday I opined that employers should stop making excuses and make a start on boosting employee morale, security and engagement, regardless of their inability to fix the wider issues we face with the economy, social change and so on.
I also got a little cross over on Twitter that so many businesses aren't bothering to address this issue, leaving themselves exposed and with a potential ticking timebomb of disengagement, stress, ill-health, anxiety, fear and lost talent on their hands.
'Unhappy employees are unproductive employees', I tweeted. It seemed to strike a chord, with two conversations springing from this; one agreeing with my point, and one challenging me on it.
The challenger stated: "I've got employees who'd rather be elsewhere, but they do their jobs. They're productive."
My response: "And how much more would you get out of them if they weren't resentful of every moment spent in the workplace? How much more would they do and how much better would they be to have around if they liked being there, liked their colleagues and liked you? They're not productive right now."
He came back: "But I get what I need from them. What's wrong with that?"
"Absolutely nothing," I replied, "providing you're happy to get what you need and none of what you'd like."
"Information. Answers to these questions:
Who's your talent? Who can step up? Who's the best ambassador for your business? Who'd do your job if- forgive me- you got hit by a bus? How does your Company look to your clients? Does it seem a good place to work? Why should they buy from you? What do competitors think of you? Are they envious because you do something they don't, or is it the other way around? How's your reputation in your market?"
He's gone quiet. I hope he's thinking about this, and has gone in to his workplace today with a different perspective. I also hope that his people have a great day at work, and not just do what's needed.