If employee engagement is linked to high performance and a sustainably profitable business with “trust” is the catalyst for engagement the question becomes, “how do we build trust within the organization?” The answer is rather simple – stop doing some of the things that are traditionally part of all organizations. Stop incentive programs. Do away with your commision plans. Shelve your annual performance appraisal that ranks employees causing internal competition. Remove the banners that taunt employees to be safer, to think quality, to be accountable. Stop badgering employees to cut waste, reduce accidents, improve efficientcy.
Instead replace all these things with Leadership. Turn your managers and supervisors to be problem solving animals. Start teaching them about systems and variation. Start teaching them how to listen. Start teaching them how to give up control. Start teaching them how to let go and how to trust the process. Start teaching them how to design, build and sustain processes. Start teaching them to lead from their heart and not their brains!