I was sipping prissy coffee at Nerdvana when I read about the Worst Video Game Ever Created. According to the New Yorker, the worst video game is Desert Bus by Penn and Teller.
In Desert Bus, you drive real-time from Tucson to Las Vegas. That’s 8 hours alone in the desert in a bus that pulls to the right. Finish the trip, and you receive one point. Then you turn around and begin the same lonely trip again.
Teller once said, “Your task is simply to remain conscious.” Funny for a game. Scary for a business.
You need your people to be more than conscious. Talent is pricey.
Somewhere in your organization, there is an employee in a dusty cube blankly staring at a computer screen. They are stuck in a desk-bound Desert Bus scenario feeling alone or not challenged by the work. There are many reasons people lose focus or motivation, but the bottom line is they are unable to fully engage in the work you so desperately need them to complete.
A focus on employee engagement prevents a Desert Bus scenario for your employees.
According to a Gallup study in 2013, seven out of ten employees are not engaged in their work. Current numbers sit at 32% engaged in the U.S. (as of Feb 2017). That seems crazy. It’s hard to imagine that companies survive these kinds of engagement numbers. Unfortunately, I’ve been a member of specific teams where these numbers match reality.
Your people are passionate about the work, so I’d be surprised if you see disengagement numbers close to 70%.
Whether you have 10% disengaged employees or 68% disengaged employees, you need to take action.
How do you help your employees get their deadlines back on track?
How do you get everyone to work together to avert a potential meltdown?
Trust is Not Optional
Successful teams have a foundation of trust.
Employees understand that things go wrong and mistakes are made, but if they trust, they will give co-workers and managers the benefit of the doubt.
Employees are more likely to stay engaged and be a part of the solution if there is trust.
Telling you to “go build some trust” with your disengaged employees is about as helpful as telling you to “go forth and be successful.” That’s vague as heck. You need somewhere to start.
In the Harvard Business Review article The Simplest Way to Build Trust, David DeSteno states, “If you can make someone feel a link with you, his empathy for and willingness to cooperate with you will increase.”
This is called the perception of similarity, and it’s a powerful way to connect with each of your employees. Then you can help the employee connect with their job and their team again.
When I was in tech, I was juggling 1678 pieces of data in my head, tired from the server malfunction and trying to stay focused to lead my team. I greatly value people care, but when you’re worn out and distracted, it can be tough to know where to start.
Let’s get you a system that works for you… and for each of your employees.
DISC Training Builds Trust Quickly
The absence of any other human in the Desert Bus game shows the absurdity of trying to find success alone. Yes, you need to continually build trust with each of your employees. You also need your people to build trust with each other.
Give employees the tools to understand each other, and they will find what they have in common.
When your people see how they are similar, this perception of similarity helps your people build trust within the team. In an environment of trust, an employee who is struggling will be more open about the real issues so that you can help them find solutions.
There is already a system to help your employees understand each other and improve their ability to communicate with each other. It’s called DISC.
Good news. DISC is tested and used by over 100,000 companies. It’s backed by over 30 years of brain research.
More good news. DISC works in all teams. It even works when people are tired and distracted. It’s easy to use in real-life.
The best news. You have found the one person on this rotating rock that speaks geek AND is a certified DISC trainer. I teach these proven communication tools using terminology and examples from tech and popular fandoms.
The faster we get these tools in the hands of your teams, the faster you see improvement.
You are not stuck on a desolate desert road in a bus all alone. I’m here to help.
Building a business is an epic adventure. I’m in your cache of weapons to call upon.
Ready to book training for your teams? Call or text 214-997-4921 today.