Firms need to distinguish between job and organisation when it comes to employee engagement
The Green Apple Podcast does weekly “Green Apple Slices”, where John Garrett and Rachel Fisch discuss a recent business article related to the Green Apple Message. These shorter segments are released each Monday, so don’t miss an episode by subscribing on iTunes or an Android app.
This week, John and Rachel discuss an Insight article, “Firms need to distinguish between job and organisation when it comes to employee engagement” by Neil Franklin.
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Good morning. Happy Monday. It’s John Garrett coming to you with another episode of Green Apple Slices, where every Monday, I call up the Accountants Group Leader for Sage in Canada, Rachel Fisch. I have my fingers crossed that she answers. There she is, Rachel.
Rachel: Here I am. Hey, John. How are you?
John: Doing great. And you?
Rachel: Good. I just got back from Chicago for the weekend. Later this week, I’ll be heading onto New Orleans. I’m pretty excited about that.
John: Look at you getting all America and stuff.
Rachel: Well, I have to even out like how often you’re in Canada.
John: That’s true. Actually, that is true. It’s part of the foreign exchange program that we have set up. The new NAFTA everybody.
Rachel: We got this thing figured out.
John: Yeah, exactly. Every Monday, we always chat through an article that we find online about engagement or culture or things like that to help accountants and bookkeepers and the lawyers and consultants and white collar nerds everywhere to make the workplace much better place. I say white collar nerds because I’m one of them. So I’m allowed to. But, yeah, I found this article on workplaceinsight.net which the article was by Neil Franklin and it was “Firms Need to Distinguish between Job and Organization When it comes to Employee Engagement.” Just something that I hadn’t really thought about I guess totally.
Rachel: I hadn’t really thought about it either because it just seems like a natural fit that if you’re kind of happy with your company as a culture, that would extend it to your job and vice versa. What Neil is talking about here is kind of being mindful about differentiating the two which I thought was kind of an interesting concept because I don’t think we’ve talked about that before.
John: Yeah, I haven’t at all. It was actually a study published by the Institute for employee’s employment studies which went into a lot more detail of this which you can read it also if you want at greenapplepodcast.com. We’ll have the link there. Just through I guess just understand the differences between job engagement and an organizational engagement which is kind of interesting because you can really love your company or really love your firm but maybe hate the job that you’re doing there.
Rachel: I guess that’s a reasonable thing. I always like it when they kind of break things down into actionable things. First of all, this is a really short blog. My OCD is satisfied, yes, a quick read and on to go. And it gives me a five-step thing. It is checking all the boxes for me. First of all, understand the differences. Of course, they bring in employment survey. John Garrett, how do you feel about surveys for your employees? Because I’m not quite sure we’re clear on that.
John: if you have a ton of people, you could do the survey, but talk to them. Just talk to them on a regular basis. If you need some data to use for something, then I guess you could have a survey. But just talk to them, so then the results from the survey aren’t a surprise. That’s the thing. That’s the craziest part of it all is — well, we had no idea this was going to — well, if you would talk to your people once every week or so on a regular basis —
Rachel: You would know.
John: Yeah, you would know.
Rachel: I do think that there comes a point where it makes sense to you as business data in order to measure these things. Because I think that too often, squeaky wheel gets the oil and you make decisions based on stories as oppose to fact. Where it gets a little challenging in an organization though is where the stories don’t line up with fact. For example, when you’re hearing a lot of input in a different way and your data is telling you something different, but at least you’ve got something to measure it against and you can kind of seek out those anomalies. Sorry if that was too big a word.
John: I’m just googling anomaly.
Rachel: But at least you got that data to kind of test the stories or you see the data and then know what does that mean to an employee’s experience here. When I hear this, what does that actually mean?
John: Yeah, absolutely. Another one of the steps was use technology effectively which had to get you super riled up.
Rachel: It gets me all excited.
John: Right. Technology.
Rachel: And also involving the line manager. We’ve talked about how there can so often be a disconnect between the C-suite seeing and the staff who are the ones who actually get measured on engagement. By really involving your management team along the way, then you can let that desired culture seep through your entire organization and also add accountability along the way as well.
John: Yeah, no, definitely. Because I mean in the middle managers, that’s where it’s hardest because they’re being pulled in both directions and not always trained properly on how to be a manager because they were probably the best doer and then got promoted. Being in charge of people and managing people is a totally different skillset.
Rachel: For sure, it is.
John: Definitely. But yeah, and so I think it’s really fascinating. You can be really engaged with your job and love the role but maybe not so much the organization or vice versa. I know in my career for sure, I experienced both. It always ends up with me becoming a comedian and now hosting a podcast.
Rachel: So we know how that worked out.
John: Unless we want a thousand Green Apple Podcast to be out there then everybody else get on it because we don’t need any more of that stuff.
Rachel: Which we don’t. Sorry, the answer is we don’t know.
John: Oh, right, because that would be an anomaly. Wait. Oh, my goodness. I almost used it properly.
John: But yeah, if that’s something that strikes your fancy, be sure to go to greenapplepodcast.com if you want to read the whole article or see the link to the research paper that’s there. Don’t forget soon hit subscribe so you can hear us every Monday talking through a different article with some new insights. And then every Wednesday, a one-on-one interview that I have with somebody that has a passion or an interest outside of work and they’re always super fascinating. Like last week was Rachel Hane to geocache which is crazy cool, right?
Rachel: I just like Rachels. I just love it when you have other Rachels on.
John: Right. They should all be named Rachel, especially Dave Erb. He’s a lighthouse hunter. That’s pretty awesome.
John: So definitely some cool ones to check out. Check out greenapplepodcast.com. Follow us on Twitter @GreenApplePod and you’re at — what’s your Twitter handle again?
John: @FischBooks, that’s what it is with your billion followers. I’m @RecoveringCPA. Hopefully, everybody has a great week and we’ll talk to you next Monday. Have a good one, Rachel.
Rachel: You too, John.