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Do You Know Where You Really Fall?

A couple weeks ago I wrote about the ongoing challenge of employee disengagement. In that blog (Which You is Going to Show Up?), I mentioned that The Gallup Organization poll continues to show employee engagement around 30 percent. Disengaged employees make up 55 percent, and actively disengaged employees make up the remaining 15 percent. These numbers change a little year-over-year and month-over-month, but in the end we have 7 out of 10 employees who are disengaged on the job.

If you’ve heard me speak then you know I like to give people names. I refer to the engaged in the top 30 percent as the “Oh, Yeahs” because they eagerly take on any task they’re given and go the extra mile to get it right regardless of the task. I refer to the disengaged in the middle 55 percent as the “OKs” because they will do the bare minimum to get by, collect a paycheck, and go home. They are getting the job done, but they aren’t going above and beyond to help the organization. And I refer to the actively disengaged in the bottom 15% as the “Oh, Nos” because they tear down any idea or improvement in the organization regardless of how good it might be.

Now, keep in mind an engagement poll doesn’t ask employees if they’re engaged. The poll is written to indicate engagement vs. disengagement based on how they feel about different aspects of an organization’s culture and the leadership they receive. In most cases, people don’t really know where they fall so they couldn’t answer the question anyway. Seldom will someone admit they are actively disengaged, nor will they admit they are just disengaged (even if they realized it). In fact, my experience has shown me that many who are disengaged actually see themselves as highly engaged. This incorrect self-analysis can be demoralizing to the engaged employees in an organization.

So, think about where you fall in engagement. Are you engaged, disengaged, or actively disengaged? Then, take a look at this video and ask yourself, “Would the people around me agree with my self-analysis?” Click here for video

Clint Swindall

© 2015 Clint Swindall — Clint is the president & CEO of Verbalocity, Inc., a personal development company with a focus on leadership enhancement. For information about how he can enhance employee engagement in your organization, please visit, or contact him directly at

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