EFS’ New Engaging Managers’ Zone 

It has been a hard year; an exhausting year. All around the world, millions of people continue to work, hard and passionately, in the face of unprecedented, unforgiving challenges – overcoming significant hardships at home, at work and everywhere in between.

In the exceptional and everyday heroics we have all witnessed throughout 2020, employee engagement has been a major contributor. People have pulled together to do what they must – and more – to get the job done.

And now more than ever, the world needs employees who enthusiastically embrace what they are doing, why they are doing it and who they are doing it for. Getting it right is not about ‘giving’ and ‘taking’, it’s about compassion, communication and collaboration. People managers are – and have always been – part of the solution.  Every team of heroes needs a leader.

It isn’t easy being a people manager, especially when the world is caught in the grip of constant crisis. Expectations from above and below are rising, but cultivating a highly engaged, high performing team does not need to be an impossible, superhuman task.

We believe that every manager can become an engaging manager, with the right guidance and support, and the right answers to the right questions.

There’s a lot out there regarding managers and employee engagement. And we’ll soon be introducing the Engaging Managers’ Zone (EMZ) which will a supportive starting point – a helping hand and an opportunity, to ‘take a step back’. Through the EMZ we aim to speak directly to the people managers themselves – stepping into their shoes and exploring employee engagement through their eyes.  We’ll get right into the thick of some key questions, moving swiftly but surely from ‘who’ and ‘why’ to ‘what’ and ‘how’.

There are seven parts to the Engaging Managers’ Zone:

  1. Context and purpose: What employee engagement is, why it’s important, and what it means for you.
  2. The role of the engaging manager: Understanding your roles and responsibilities.
  3. Taking ownership of employee engagement: Clarifying your objectives, building your strategy, and helping you take ownership of your own engagement.
  4. Your employee engagement landscape: Exploring the engagement dynamics that permeate your organisation.
  5. Your local drivers of engagement: The drivers of engagement within your responsibility and control.
  6. Taking action: Continuously reinforcing and improving engagement whilst championing and promoting the engagement agenda.
  7. Additional resources and further reading: Continuously reinforcing and improving engagement whilst championing and promoting the engagement agenda.

The EMZ is not just another toolkit, it’s a ‘one-stop knowledge hub’ made for YOU – a source of ideas, options and things to think about.  It’s not our intention to prescribe ‘the answer’ or any ‘quick fixes’.  Instead, we encourage readers to browse and explore, following their own interests and priorities, asking their own questions and reflecting on what their answers might be.

Through the EMZ, our aim will be to provide clarity, friendly challenge and reassurance, with a sense of practical direction, momentum and do-ability.

At the same time, we want to promote the strategic and operational value of engaging managers; because, now more than ever, the world also needs people managers who enthusiastically embrace what they are doing, why they are doing it, and who they are doing it for. Responsibility for engaging employees does not belong to people managers alone, but by deliberately choosing and striving to have a positive impact on employee engagement, they can make a meaningful difference – for their employer, for their people and for themselves.

Author bio: Oliver Blackwell, EMZ Author

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