The Heart – The Centre of Employee Engagement.

By Richard Chilee

There are several topical matters arising in human resource management today, one of which is the subject of Employee Demotivation. This is noteworthy given that personal discussions with successful entrepreneurs identify employee demotivation as one of their biggest challenges after launch, hiring and start up.

Today, many employers complain that the average employee gives the organization less than is required for the achievement of maximum productivity with the consequent impact of untold harm to their organizations. On the other hand, employees are showing lower levels of engagement and commitment to their organizations, evidenced by high labor turnover rates and very low levels of employer satisfaction.

Many employers are searching for the reason for the steady rise in employee demotivation reflected in declining productivity.

I strongly believe that the biggest cause of employee demotivation is the lack of emotional intelligence on the part of employers. Today, many employers are not emotionally intelligent. They lack the essential emotional skills to manage and optimize their human resources in order to bring out the best in them. Many employers still believe in, and adopt, the idea of a command and control managerial style. But commanding and controlling your employees will never work effectively – It has never worked effectively. This is largely because command and control hinders employees from unleashing their innate potentials that could make the organization more successful, profitable and sustainable.

A workforce without the right motivation to work is not equipped to display the personal spark and connection the organization requires to thrive. These employees mostly view work as tedious; and approach it as a means to an end. Many will act out their discontent in counterproductive ways which could adversely affect the productivity, profitability and image of the organization. Several of such employees form a demotivated workforce which creates a culture that results in organizational boredom and detachment.

Work is emotional before it is intellectual, and this understanding is lacking with many employers. A good employer has to be emotionally intelligent before he can successfully deal harmoniously with his employees and bring out the best in them. To successfully engage the hearts and hands of employees and involve them at the peak of their productivity, the employer has to actively seek various means of connecting with the hearts of employees to ensure a successful engagement with their hands and heads.

When employees work only with their heads and hands, discontent, disengagement and demotivation is very plausible. But when the employer earns the hearts of the employees, he is rewarded with an invaluable sense of commitment. It is this level of commitment driven by more than a head calculation of benefits due that drives work ownership and productivity.

Employees are human beings, not robots and machines. Thus, employers must seek to become more emotionally intelligent beginning with their understanding of this simple concept. This is the starting point in employee motivation.

The heart is the center of organizational engagement; it also drives the triple Cs of engagement – Connection, Communication and Collaboration. To gain maximum productivity from your people, get their hearts, let them feel appreciated, loved and like part of a community. Let them know that their happiness in and out of work is a priority and that your goal as an organization is also directed towards achieving their personal goals.

When employees know that they are more than just a means to the numbers, they will willingly give you their heads and hands.

Real engagement and commitment comes from the heart. Sustainable engagement is an experience not an event.


is a thinker, content developer and business development strategist. He is the Principal of Richard & Malcolm Consulting; a business development company. Richard enjoys working with entrepreneurs and leaders pursuing transformational change for their organizations. He is the author of two books – The RICH Theory and Advance. Connect with him on twitter @RichardChilee

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