Engaging Voices: David Zinger


Over the past two years, I have connected with a bunch of very cool people who are passionate about employee engagement. So, one of my goals for the Here We Are. Now What? blog in 2009, is to feature several of these "engaging voices."

First up is consultant, coach, and blogger David Zinger, M .Ed., a leading expert on both employee engagement and strength based leadership. His blog, Employee Engagement Zingers, as well as the Employee Engagement Network, which he founded and moderates, are leading online spaces for ideas and conversation on employee engagement.

Here is David on how we (organizations and individuals) can thrive in this most challenging economy.

First off, we must move more from me to WE. As organizations, if you say people are your greatest resource, do you back that up or do you chop them off as soon as economic challenges begin to loom on the horizon? As individuals, do we fully contribute to our organizations to help them become as viable as we are valuable?

Don't get swayed by fear. As organizations, our decisions must not be fear-based. Ensure we have the facts and take our time. This is the most important time to be care-full. Full of caring, but also deliberate and cautious. As individuals, we need to infuse love into our work. Not mushy love but the discipline, concentration, and patience to develop our work and our career. Love (discipline, concentration, patience) is the pathway to overcome or dissipate away fear.

Lighten up. We don't lighten up by throwing people overboard. We don't lighten up as individuals by not thinking deeply about our own career. We lighten up by realizing if we can laugh, we can last. Charlie Chaplin said it so very well: Life is a tragedy in close-up and a comedy in long-shot. Don't take too long to get a long shot. If you laugh, you last.

If we are not thriving at least make sure we are surviving. I don't mean laying people off and working with the survivors. I mean making sure you make it safe and you approach all human decisions with the utmost humanity. This means honesty, integrity, trust, and respect. As individuals, we should have a plan B...not to bail out, but if the organization is sinking, knowing where we would like to go next.

Finally, become brand new. As organizations, ensure that you live your brand, not just to your customers but to your employees. As an individual, work on your own personal brand. This does not mean you wear logos like a race car driver; it means that you know both your strengths and the value you add, create, and offer to others. Remember your brand isn't what you say it is, it is what others say about you. Ensure that you are worthy of people saying good things about you.

We are in this together. Individuals and organizations. Let's ensure that we work towards mutual purpose while always treating each other with mutual respect. We thrive by fully remaining alive to all our many dimensions as organizations and individuals.

[Copyright 2009 by David Zinger. All rights reserved.]

Posted by Terrence Seamon, January 14, 2009

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