Engaged – Why Not? How To?

I was in M&S (Marks & Spencer) and noticed the behaviour of a staff member on the shop floor – I watched her hang a dress on a rack, as she walked away she heard something, turned and looked back only to see that the dress had fallen off the hanger and was in a heap on the floor. She then turned away from it, looked at me as I was looking at the dress on the floor and walked away. She didn’t go back and re-hang the dress, even with her knowing I knew she saw it fall and left it.

What would prompt a staff member to disregard an aspect of their job? Especially in the presence of a customer?

There are many reasons this might be the case:

  • She doesn’t care
  • She doesn’t know what success looks like
  • She doesn’t know what’s expected of her
  • She’s lazy

Management can impact some of those which you might try with your staff:

  • Care about your staff not just behave like you care, really care – listen to them, see them as human beings, understand what’s important to them
  • Discuss with, not tell, your staff what success looks like
  • Clearly communicate your expectations, ask them what they heard, show them, remind them, catch them doing it right
  • Ensure your recruitment practices require applicants to demonstrate initiative and positive attitude regardless of the position

Where could you positively impact your staff engagement?