Derek Bishop


Use it or lose it – why Employee Engagement matters

Date added: 30th Mar 2016
Category: Employee Engagement

If you don’t make the most of your employees then you may have blown the one chance you have to build a lasting and viable organisation.

Heading rapidly towards the end of the tax year it is not unusual to encounter a number of articles of the use it or lose it variety. Generally these relate to ISA allowances but this year with various changes to pension scheme rules and the taxation of dividends coming into force in the next tax year the use it or lose it recommendations have covered a wider spectrum.

Of course in an ideal world we would all be well on top of our tax and investment portfolios and such reminders would not be necessary. But when work and friendships and family all compete for our time it can be easy to let areas such as investments and making a will become mañana actions; to be carried out at some stage, generally when they have become so time critical that we have no option other than to act.

But it isn’t just in our personal lives that we can fall into the trap of leaving things until it is way past the optimum time to act. As leaders we know that employee engagement is critical to the success of our organisations; but continuing surveys pointing to low levels of engagement highlight just how lax some businesses are at addressing engagement issues.

Yes, I know that developing the new product, building the customer bank, attracting investors and promoting the organisation all feature highly on our to-do lists; but quite frankly we can’t afford to make employee engagement a mañana action. So what are the consequences of ignoring employee engagement? Well for a start in the spirit of use it or lose it, unless we engage with our people then we are going to lose them. The brightest and the best of our people will simply go elsewhere, the rest will be so disengaged that they might as well not be present.

What that means fundamentally is that writing your to-do list is effectively a waste of time as the disengaged employees drag the organisation down with them. Let’s face it, if you want to develop a new product then you’re only going to succeed if your people are fully engaged in collaborating and developing real solutions. If you want to build the customer bank then the task will be far easier with knowledgeable and enthusiastic employees who are fully engaged in promoting the best interests of the organisation. And if you want to build the reputation of the organisation, thereby attracting investors then the only way you’re going to do it is through great product and great service delivered by great employees.

If you don’t make the most of your ISA allowance before the end of the tax year then okay you’ve lost the chance this year, but you got another chance with a fresh allowance available in the next tax year. If you don’t make the most of your employees then you may have blown the one chance you have to build a lasting and viable organisation.

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