If you’ve read any of my recent blogs or articles you’ll have realised that I’ve started to hone in on the topic of employee engagement.

I’m in my very early exploratory phase of this topic so if my rantings seem a little naïve to those of you who consider yourself ‘employee engagement/empowerment’ gurus then please forgive me.

One small observation I’d like to make based on my own experience inside a number of large organisations (you know who you are) is that employee engagement which many consider to be a fancy term for internal communication is a very low priority for many companies. For the most part it seems to almost happen by accident.

Corporate hospitality vs employee engagement

Another observation I’ve made is that a lot of ‘sales’ focused organisations spend more time on ‘wining and dining’ their big customers and potential customers but very little time and money on keeping their most important asset (their employees) happy and engaged. In fact the overspend on corporate hospitality has a negative effect on employee happiness because those who are not involved in it, resent those who are. It’s often very obvious to employees that their boss’ choice of corporate hospitality lines up neatly with that same boss’ favourite pastime like rugby or cricket.

The reality is that if they focused their attention inwards even occasionally they might find that they can get an increase in sales by just sharing a bit more.

I don’t consider employee engagement to be simply sending more emails or newsletters. It’s about involving your employees so they feel that they are working towards a common goal. A goal that they were actually involved in setting. Not radical thinking. Just common sense in my view. It seems to me that a lot of organisational goals are decided by senior management teams and then conveyed downwards as a decree. It’s not surprising that those working in the lower rungs don’t embrace them.

Am I being too critical or even too naïve? I’d love to hear from other people working in or for large companies.