The opposite of engagement is endullment. Endullment comes from the education literature and means the dulling of people’s minds through lack of intellectual participation in the classroom.
At work, mind-numbing repetitive tasks, endless hours producing reports you know nobody reads, a hyper-focus on evaluation scores, tick-box compliance processes, constricting rules and a culture of fearing making a mistake all contribute to the endullment of employees.
We all know the benefits of engaged employees – the extra effort given willingly in pursuit of excellence, the intrinsic satisfaction of doing a good job, a healthier emotional climate and, dare I say, more fun.
Engagement surveys tend to lead to the conclusion that we need to ‘do more’ to engage our employees, but I bet that we could make huge improvements by eliminating the structures and processes that lead to endullment for people.
So here’s a challenge for you – what one thing could you change to alleviate endullment in your workplace?
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