Electronicly Tracking Employees Behavior at Work is a Symptom of Poor Leadership

An article titled: “Memo to Employees: The Boss Is Watching,” appeared in today’s Wall Street Journal. The article discussed the issue of electronically tracking employees behavior at work. This article takes the approach that employee ranks are filled with “trouble makers” who are lazy, dishonest, untrustworthy, prone to “goofing off” and need to be kept on a “tight leash.” There is, however, another way of looking at this situation. In reality, the things mentioned are actually symptoms of poor leadership, a culture that fails to engage employees and sloppy hiring practices. If business owners and managers would install a culture that engaged its employees, hired only those people who are going find meaning in the kind of work being done at their particular company and supported their employees rather than trying to control them, there would be no need to look over their shoulders with tracking technology. Instead, their employees would come to work every day excited about giving every bit of energy, creativity and passion to performing their jobs. This would dramatically increase the levels of productivity, customer service, employee loyalty and profitability. One of the lessons I have learned during my 30-plus years as a business consultant is that you can’t achieve excellence through control, but you can create an environment where employees give it to you voluntarily. To see this in action, check out the likes of Google, JetBlue, W. L. Gore & Associates and Zappos.

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About Ross Reck

Who am I? I am the author of The Engagement Formula, Turning Your Customers into Your Sales Force, The X-Factor and my popular weekly newsletter: Ross Reck’s Weekly Reminder. I'm also the coauthor of Instant Turnaround!, REVVED! and the best selling The Win-Win Negotiator. I've also spoken at hundreds of meetings, conferences and conventions throughout the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe and Asia. My consulting clients include Hewlett-Packard, John Deere, American Express, Janssen-Ortho, Inc., Shire Pharmaceuticals, Philip Morris International, the Chicago Cubs, Rolls-Royce and Xerox. I received my Ph.D. from Michigan State University in 1977. From 1975 to 1985 I served a Professor of Management at Arizona State University. During my career at ASU I was the only two-time recipient of the prestigious “Teaching Excellence in Continuing Education” award and was identified by the university as an “Outstanding Teacher.” In 1985 I left my position at ASU to search full-time for a new "Management Model" to replace the current model with it's emphasis on authority, control and formal communication channels. Last February, I found it (it's actually a leadership model) and it's featured in my new book, The Engagement Formula: Three Simple Steps that Guarantee Full Employee Engagement.

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