are you engaged in your work
Are You Engagd in Your Work?

Fall is approaching and many are wondering what to do with their lives. Fall, a season of transformations, may be the time to reassess life career goals, welcome new opportunities!

Current research suggest (by Aon, a global professional consulting firm, and Gallup) forces such as favorable economic conditions and greater workforce stability may be causing an all- time high in employee engagement.

Job engagement refers to the psychological and emotional extent to which people participate in their work, profession and organization. Top performers, who are engaged in their work, generally have high levels of job involvement. Studies show high job involvement contributes to high employee job satisfaction, morale and productivity. It's also related to workers' attainment of personal and professional goals. 

Do you identify closely with your job? Are your moods and feelings affected by your work? Are you involved in your job?

Job Engagement Quiz
Answer yes or no.
1. I'm an effective team contributor.
2. I’ll stay overtime to finish a task.
3. I feel depressed when I fail at something connected with my job.
4. I dislike the type of work I do on a daily basis.
5. Most friends agree I get my energy from work.
6. I never work weekends.
7. I rarely have input into decisions made in my organization.
8. I do what I can to just get by at work.
9. I don't feel included in team work and lack energy while at work.
10. I have sufficient resources and support to do a good job.

Scoring: one point for each yes response to statements 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and 10; and one point for each no response to questions 4, 7, 8, and 9. Add your points. The higher your score, the more engaged you are in your work.

8 or higher. You seem to be very involved in your work, probably enjoy it, and are good at it. You may be active in implementing new ideas and bring value to your organization. Your job may be central to your identity. You generally feel good about yourself, are healthy, independent, growth-oriented, and enjoy intrinsic rewards. Your position may satisfy needs and enables you to express your purpose. You may have an infectious enthusiasm about your work that communicates to others. You take your work seriously, and your moods and feelings may be affected by work experiences. You tend to transfer your work engagement to others. But do learn to relax. Make time for fun. Spend quality time with friends and family members, enjoy leisure activities, and find time for yourself.

4 to 7. You seem to be moderately involved in your work and may be reasonably satisfied with it. If you are happy with your work and feel that you lead a balanced life, that’s fine. However, if your job satisfaction is low, consider doing something to improve it. With your superior’s help, restructure your position so that you can fulfill your needs and use desired skills. If it’s not possible to develop challenges or change your current position—and sometimes it isn’t, explore other options.

3 or lower. Your score suggests you are not even slightly involved in your work. You probably don't feel included within the team and may also have low job satisfaction. Perhaps other aspects of your life are more interesting to you. Good! But low job involvement, which includes a lack of interest and enthusiasm, may spill over to other life components. It may even lead to poor health. If you really dislike your position, do something about it. Explore ways to restructure your job to make it more satisfying. Discuss your thoughts, feelings and job options within the organization with your supervisor. Explore other work and educational options or consider time out.

Strengthening Engagement

  • Clarify purpose. Identify themes: absorbing childhood activities, proud accomplishments, when you’re most energized, a favorite Halloween costume.
  • Be authentic. Do what’s right for you. Ensure actions are consistent with thoughts and feeling. Set goals in harmony with your purpose.
  • Build confidence. Focus on the positive. Avoid, "I can't."  Don’t compare yourself with others. Judge accomplishments against personal standards and strive for excellence.
  • Continue to learn. Read, take courses, volunteer. Challenge conventional beliefs. Recognize and seize opportunities. Find better ways to do things. Try! Place no limitations on yourself.  
  • Strengthen courage to risk. Review three successful risks taken. Note what made these successful. Identify perceived barriers for taking another risk and explore ways to overcome these.
  • Manage fear. Identify worrisome issues. Minimize these using appropriate information and resources. Live in the present. Let go of "attachments." Form a support system.
  • Restructure job to provide desired perks.
  • Move to a position that offers more challenge, autonomy.
  • Live a healthy, balanced life.

Take charge of your life. Become happily engaged at work! Learn from the Questers in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life

Dr. Carole Kanchier, career and personal growth expert, and author of Questers, shows how to succeed in changing times: