Employee Engagement

Kids Speak Out on Student (Employee) Engagement
by Heather Wolpert-Gawron

clip_image002Image credit: iStockphoto

Kids Speak Out on Student Engagement is is an excellent essay on how to improve student engagement in the classroom. It is highly recommended.

It is so darn great it was modulated for lifelong learning and employee engagement. It elaborates the critical leadership principles for sustained business innovation. It’s how to achieve employee engagement and achieve leadership excellence in perpetual innovation. 

Teachers and business leaders are charged with creating a robust learning environment. Their job is to create engaged learners and shared imagination. The most productive employees and students are those that are continuously learning.

Somewhere business lost its way. Treating people inhumanely is wrong (and expensive). It has led to an epidemic of employee disengagement.

According to Gallup’s 2017 State of the American Workplace Report fully 70% of the US workforce is not engaged in their work.

“…managers from hell are creating active disengagement costing the U.S. an estimated $450 billion to $550 billion annually.”

– Jim Clifton
Chairman and CEO


This is a crisis. The headlong flight to digital business innovation makes it apocalyptic. If you knew a recession, new competitor, hurricane or other calamity was about to hit your business hard you would do something about it, right?

These quotes from students are excellent and highly perspicacious! They furnish the fundamental principles to get digital business innovation on the path to excellence. For continuous and disruptive business innovation heed the wisdom of eighth-graders!

Kids Speak Out on Student Engagement
by Heather Wolpert-Gawron

Author’s Introduction

A while back, I was asked, “What engages students?” Sure, I could respond, sharing anecdotes about what I believed to be engaging, but I thought it would be so much better to lob that question to my own eighth graders.

The responses I received from all 220 of them seemed to fall under 10 categories, representing reoccurring themes that appeared again and again. So, from the mouths of babes, here are my students’ answers to the question: “What engages students?” – Heather Wolpert-Gawron 

What engages employees?

With enormous gratitude to Heather, conceived by eighth-graders, slight rhetorical adjustments for employees, here are the answers to the Age Old Question: What engages employees?

1. Working with their peers

“Employees are growing learners who require and want interaction with other people to fully attain their potential.”

2. Working with technology

“I believe that when employees participate in “learning by doing” it helps them focus more. Technology helps them to do that. Employees will always be extremely excited when using technology.”

3. Connecting the real world to the work

“I believe that it all boils down to relationships.”

4. Clearly love what you do

“Engaging employees can be a challenge, and if you’re stuck in a monotone, rambling on and on, that doesn’t help…instead of talking like a robot, leaders should speak to us like they’re really passionate.”

5. Get me out of my seat!

“When an employee is active they learn in a deeper way than sitting.”

6. Bring in visuals

“I like to see pictures because it makes my understanding on a topic clearer. It gives me an image in my head to visualize.”

7. Promote choice

“Having freedom in assignments, project directions, and more choices would engage employees…More variety = more space for creativity.”

8. Understand your clients

“Encourage employees to voice their opinions as you may never know what you can learn from your employees.”

9. Mix it up!

“I don’t like doing only one constant activity…a variety will keep me engaged in the topic.”

10. Be human

“Don’t forget to have a little fun yourself.”

N.B. For further reading, tools and advice see: ‘How to Engage your Staff at Each Stage of the Employee Lifecycle by Advanced Systems.  

Colabria Action Research

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