What is the challenge today? To keep stakeholders interested and engaged. Stakeholders are wrongly read as customers. Employees too are stakeholders, same goes for every participant in the business eco-system. Why is it so difficult to engage? That’s not much as an issue, rather keeping them engaged. It’s the attention span. For instance, observe the consumer behavior – a person visiting your website. More than 5 seconds, nothing on screen, the person fidgets, and 10 seconds later seeing nothing, the person move on to something else. So, whatever drew the person to your place was whittled in that 10 seconds to feel withdrawn, and shutdown. You just blew away a prospect – blame the bandwidth, or the brainstorming that sat on the site design, nothing can be done to salvage the damage. If you want to dismiss it as ‘website issue’, then remind yourself of the personal branding being pulverized. The site is your reflection. If you weren’t able to sustain the interest, how do you probably expect people to engage? Like writing, the stroke starts with a single dot, which often is either ignored or overlooked, we miss out on the basics and begrudgingly admit after the deck is done. Most companies do the product first and then look for customers. Apple did and succeeded. So, is that the template for achievement or tried model for accomplishment? Then its own iterations were based on the consumer behavior and customer response. You just can’t get everything right in your first attempt. Alright. But neither can you create something and then create a demand. It’s not reverse engineering.
It’s a two-way street. What’s in it? Is asked by both the actors – employer and employee. For me to retain my position, what is required of me? The employer may seek an alternative if you are unable to meet the KRAs, or you might start shopping for openings if you feel dissatisfied at work. And that brings an anecdote in support of the statement. One of the fellow students, a prodigy, known for sheer brilliance, and silence, an extremely soft-spoken engineer. He was not just smart but super-smart. This is the incident that happened during a campus drive with a fortune-500 company. Posed with a typical challenging and complicated integration problem to solve, he rose up from his chair within minutes. When the interviewer approached “any doubt’, he just handed the paper gesturing ‘done’. The person stood transfixed and there were no further rounds or grinds. They offered him the ‘letter’ then and there, and expressed their keen intent in absorbing in the work force. Once on board, the company would periodically check with him for any ‘wants’ which they ready to fulfill. ‘you name it and you got it.’ Instead, it was met and returned with his trademark smile that said ‘thank you’. The attitude of ‘no airs and feet firm on the ground’ endeared him as the MVP – most valuable person. A telling testimony of talent.
The ground reality
The humor doing the rounds quoting an imaginative discussion between a CEO and CFO of “what happens if we invest in developing our people and they leave us?” and the CEO responding “what happens if we don’t and they stay” might bring a smile, but then that’s the reality as well. Isn’t it? The challenge today is all about expectations and engagement. Attrition or exodus of talent is the direct impact of engagement management. Why should I stay in this company? What must I do to find a fitment? Read it again and you will observe the difference in terms of perspective. The company questions your existence and you question the company’s prudence. Win-win alone can survive and sustain this eco-system. So long one needs to survive and thrive, then it’s by challenging oneself. Keep raising the bar. It takes two to tango. So validation in isolation wouldn’t be fair. How come an individual with an accomplished track record failed to deliver in the present organization? One cannot shine selectively, and that too when he nature of job demands excellences, yet we are witnessing burn-outs and drop-outs. So, an organization is as much accountable, just like the individual to meeting deadlines and delivery. Sounds like a lead pulled out of stakeholder management?
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