A new survey from O.C. Tanner that explores the drivers behind employees moving beyond good work into great work yielded a surprising insight: While most companies chase employee engagement to inspire great work, human nature works the other way around. Get people involved in doing something great and engagement soars.
The survey found that while high engagement scores do not necessarily mean that employees are doing great work, 60 percent of employees who are performing great work are actively engaged. “So being involved in meaningful work, like innovating or improving things, is highly likely to increase employee engagement,” said researchers.
The Great Work Index Study defines good work as “adequate” and “expected.” It is work that is completed on time and leaves a positive impression with managers. Great work is defined as “innovative or productive work that goes beyond expectations. It might be about improving things or simply delivering additional value. But most of all, great work makes a difference people love.”
Part of O.C. Tanner's annual Great Work research, the study polled more than 3,400 employees from the United States, Australia, Canada, U.K., Germany and India. The study found that there are two main accelerants that encourage employees to strive for greatness: the organization's expectations for greatness and access to resources.