Title: Engaging your employees in times of uncertainty

Authors: D. Keith Denton

Addresses: Department of Management, Missouri State University, Springfield, Missouri, MO 65897, USA

Abstract: You get what you deserve. Trust comes when we understand what is going on and why. Trust comes when a manager communicates with clear goals and has effective explanations about why an issue is important and what can be done. Specialists should lose the jargon, make sure others understand and can see their role, so support will be easier to acquire. However, there are also issues everyone can address to ensure that the work environment has healthy communication. First, expect for topics to be easy to understand. You are intelligent; those you talk to should be expected to explain issues so you understand. Do not be embarrassed to ask questions. If you do not understand a word, sentence, phrase or concept, expect your |experts| or specialists to make it clear. Focus on looking for common ground, and show a willingness to not focus on self-preservation. Concentrate on facts, not opinions; always seek clarifications; ask and seek |dumb| questions. It is not dumb; it is ignorance that needs clarifying.

Keywords: trust; misunderstandings; understanding; open communication; misinformation; leadership; uncertainty; employee engagement; managers; goals; jargon; comprehension; common ground; self-preservation; clarification; ignorance; productivity; quality management.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPQM.2011.038685

International Journal of Productivity and Quality Management, 2011 Vol.7 No.2, pp.202 - 208

Available online: 21 Feb 2011

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