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Given the amount of time most people spend at work, workplace engagement is a key component of not only organizational success, but also overall quality of life for both employees and managers.
Gallup Senior Practice Expert Vibhas Ratanjee suggests managers make the transition from boss to coach, explaining the benefits Monday at the 2023 CUNA HR and Organizational Development Council Conference in San Diego.
Leading with the proper mindset is critical for managers transitioning to a coaching mentality. Ratanjee recommends that people leaders focus on employees’ strengths rather than weaknesses.
“Focusing on strengths has a massive impact on performance,” Ratanjee says, noting that most people make decisions based on emotions.
Gallup research found that employees whose performance is assessed based on strengths are six times more likely to be engaged at work than those judged by their weaknesses.
Using the analogy of the invisible bucket, Ratanjee says,“Every time you praise someone, you're filling their bucket. Every time you criticize someone, you're dipping from their bucket. How engaged and enthusiastic you are reflects how full your bucket is.”
He adds that strength-based assessment requires asking the right questions. One approach is to frame a challenge as an opportunity for growth.
“Don’t think about doing a root cause of failure; think about doing a root cause of success,” Ratanjee says.
He encourages leaders to ask employees what they feel they do best, and what role brings them the most comfort.
Other key questions managers can use to dig deeper include:
Other key takeaways from Ratanjee’s session: