q&a

get off on the right foot­ing

The National - News - Business - - TheLife -

Deb­bie Mitchell of­fers Suzanne Locke more in­sights from her new book:

When is em­ployee en­gage­ment most im­por­tant?

There is an em­ployee “life cy­cle”, which tracks an em­ployee from the point of their in­ter­est in your busi­ness, through their ca­reer with you to the point of exit. While ev­ery stage is im­por­tant, I would sug­gest that in­duc­tion is crit­i­cal. Re­search car­ried out by YouGov in the UK found that 19 per cent of new starters were ac­tively look­ing for a new role and 30 per cent planned to leave their job in the first 12 months. This is dis­rup­tive and ex­pen­sive. Get­ting things right in the early stages is more likely to set you up for suc­cess.

Which is your favourite of the 50 tools?

I love the Hot Topics tool. It’s so sim­ple and por­ta­ble and re­quires no spe­cial­ist ex­per­tise to make it hap­pen. The tool en­cour­ages a team to help each other solve a prob­lem. One per­son presents a chal­lenge and, af­ter a strict 30 min­utes, they walk away with a large and di­verse set of sug­ges­tions, ideas, so­lu­tions and rec­om­men­da­tions.

Why did you write this book?

While em­ployee en­gage­ment is recog­nised as an im­por­tant fac­tor for busi­ness suc­cess these days, many lead­ers don’t know how to mea­sure or im­prove it. I take the view that lit­tle things mat­ter. Whether your or­gan­i­sa­tion is big or small, with HR ex­per­tise or not, there are ef­fec­tive ini­tia­tives. I wrote the book as a col­lec­tion of some of the tools I have seen, used and rec­om­mended over a num­ber of years.

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