A professor in a recent executive education program on leadership elicited a lot of laughs by telling the following joke: “A CEO was asked how many people work in his company: ‘About half of them,’ he responded.” After the session, several participants put a more serious face on the problem when, while chatting, they bemoaned the fact that, in their organization, a significant number of people had mentally “checked out.”

Quite clearly, CEOs and managers should be very concerned about a waste of time, effort and resources in their organizations. The reason is simple: If people are not engaged, how can these same leaders attain those business objectives that are critical to improving organizational performance?

What do we mean by employee engagement? How much does a lack of employee engagement cost an organization? What steps can leaders take to make employees want to give it their best? These and other questions are the focus of this article. READ THE ARTICLE