Month: March 2019

Employee Experience Matters, Whether We Want It To Or Not With Tom Krieglstein

The easiest solution to the handling employee engagement is to ignore it. The details and intricacy of understanding how people feel and adjusting to those feelings requires a great deal of effort and time. It requires a shift in mindset and a not small amount of awareness. So by and large, organizations simply stick their head in the sand and pretend like it’s a pop psychology fad that doesn’t matter.

But we know it does.

Hiding from the problem, or any problem for that matter, doesn’t go away because we choose to ignore it. People never wanted to be in a contract-based relationship with their employer, so the idea that we can simply pay people and call it a day, doesn’t work.

Every moment of everyday is an experience for employees. They unavoidably participant in the culture of the company. They are victims or beneficiaries of the interactions and politics of the workplace.

This inevitable participation in the ebb and flow of the organization means that ignoring the problem will absolutely not make it better. Nine times out of ten, it makes it worse.

In a recent podcast with Tom Krieglstein, founder of Swift Kick (an organization that trains leaders on creating a culture of connection), he described the nature of the work force as a dance floor. He asserts that all employees are essentially just attendees at a dance. The most engaged employees are dancing in the middle and the least are sitting by the wall with their arms folded wishing they were somewhere else. The goal of an organization is to get people in the middle of the dance floor actively involved and participating. This powerful construct is called Dance Floor Theory and is how Tom and his team help engage employees at organizations across the nation. To listen to the rest of the podcast visit, Forging Employee Experience, and to stay connected with Tom visit his website at

The company culture of an organization is very much like a dance that everyone must attend whether they want to or not. If the dance facilitators, or company leadership, tries to pretend like engagement doesn’t matter than the company culture will fizzle like a dying party that everyone eventually tries to leave.

TOMO! With Lindsay McGregor

Motivation. If you can understand what motivates your employees, you’ll have summarily solved your organizations engagement problem.

Unfortunately, the journey of understanding each employee’s individual source of motivation is long and difficult. While everyone is motivated by something, sources of motivation are as unique as the people themselves. Here in lies the burden of leadership, managers must know what motivates their people. It is impossible for the company executives to both understand and make policies that are custom tailored to all the employees. So, the burden rests with managers to make sure they lead their people according to what moves them.

When trying to better address the ever elusive “why” behind employee engagement issues, organizations must ensure they have created an environment that allows management to find real answers. All to often, organizations pass along as lip service the idea of management empowerment, which encourages them to run their teams they way they want to produce the best work. At the same time these same organizations enforce so much bureaucratic approval processes that nothing gets done without their bosses’ boss giving the sign off.

If organizations consistently reinforce the idea that management doesn’t actually have the power to make real meaningful decisions, then in time managers will stop trying to effect positive change in their teams. They will stop trying to figure out what moves their employees to greatness because even if they could figure it out, they’re powerless to enable those aspirations.

Without being able to motivate employees, organizations will be stuck in the void of low engagement.

In a recent podcast, Lindsay McGregor, author of Primed to Performand cofounder of Vega Factor, explained to us the science behind employee motivation. She described three instrumental characteristics to ensure that employees are fully motivated: play, purpose, and potential. She asserts that work needs to have elements that are enjoyable. People want to have an amount of fun while doing any task so why not help make work a little more fun? That fun shouldn’t just be random and directionless but be focused and with purpose. Everything that people do at work should have a purpose. Useless and boring tasks will demotivate people very quickly. Finally, the work should drive people to reach their potential. To reach out to Lindsey, visit her at her LinkedIn page.

Everybody has drive. Everybody has passion. As humans, there are things that move us and inspire us to be better than we are. While the specifics behind each person’s motivation vary tremendously, it’s imperative to understand that each of us has something for which we are willing to go above and beyond. Only organizations that enable managers to affect change in their employees’ lives will find success motivating their people.

Crafting the Employee Experience in Growing Companies with Bek Chee, Head of Talent, Atlassian

Often the story of poor employee engagement seems connected with companies that have been around for a long time. Typically, these organizations hold on to how things have always been done. With such a long history, it’s no surprise that there is a resistance to new processes and crafting a new culture. However, we live in a world of growing companies. These young, new companies are founded on ideals of innovation and effecting change. While it’s easy to have a pulse on employee engagement and to carefully create the company culture in the early stages, most organizations struggle to hold on to their roots as they grow.

No young company expects to survive without innovation. By and large all the good ideas have been taken. In order to advance, organizations must innovate their product/service offering. But what about their company culture? Most organizations don’t take enough time cultivating their growing company’s culture, until it’s too late. As organizations grow, owners must ensure that the collaborative, trusting environment that was essential to fostering the innovation that built the company, is maintained through growth.

The most important element of maintaining a strong, desirable company culture is onboarding. As owners in a growing company expand and begin to hire managers, it is imperative that these managers not only have the skillset necessary to get the job done, but that they will also be responsible for contributing to the cultural identity of the company. One of the biggest mistakes a young company can make, as it relates to ensuring the survival of the original culture, is to hire for skill and not character. Very few skills can’t be learned on the job. Doctors, lawyers, and handful of other degree-heavy professionals can’t afford to learn things live. Most everyone else, in almost every other profession, can be taught how to do a job. So, when young organizations think to the future of what their business will become, a critical component of that vision should be what the company culture will look like.

If organizations maintain the company culture that defined them in the beginning when they had no employees, then the employees that join as the organization grows, will have a fantastically positive experience. It is so much easier to maintain positive culture during growth than to let it grow wild and try to fix it later.

In a recent podcast, we had the opportunity to speak with Head of Talent at Atlassian, Bek Chee. In our conversation, we learned that this is an organization that epitomizes this concept maintaining strong, positive company culture. Founded in 2002, in Sydney Australia, Atlassian boasts impressive employee engagement scores in excessive of 80%. Employees love working there. When asked how the organization accomplished such an impressive feat, Chee responded that the company had always stayed very close to its roots and maintained the great culture it was built on. For more insights on cultivating an incredible employee experience, listen to the rest of the podcast at Forging Employee Experience. Feel free to reach out to Bek Chee via LinkedIn. By keeping a hand on the metaphorical culture steering wheel, growing organizations can ensure they never lose what made