Although Phil Mickelson was basely in contention at the recent U.S. Open golf championship, it didn’t stop him from running after the ball on the 13th hole and hitting it as it was moving to prevent it from rolling further past the hole. Although he broke the rules, he was not disqualified but rather mercifully received a two-stroke penalty.
While golf purists may be appalled at Phil’s actions, I chuckled as I instantly knew he acted the way he did because he was disengaged. It’s behavior I see all the time – employees ‘acting out’ because they are frustrated, fed up, and think the playing ground isn’t fair.
In this case, the playing ground we’re talking about is the Shinnecock Hills Golf Couse in Southampton, NY, and how it was set-up by the United States Golf Association (USGA). Many players complained throughout the tournament about pin placements, slippery slopes, and overall, an unmanageable course that was simply too difficult to navigate. Sound like your organization? If so, don’t be surprised if your employees ‘check out’ and pull a Phil Mickelson, acting in ways that you deem to be against the rules.
As an organization, you owe it to your people to create a culture that inspires, motivates, challenges and engages, not one that frustrates, disappoints, and is seemingly one-sided and unfair. There’s only so much a person can, should, or will take before lashing out, often by disengaging. So if your organization continues to cross the line, don’t be surprised if employees follow suit.
WHAT CAN I DO? Launch a journey to improve your culture. In addition to improving productivity, creativity, retention, customer satisfaction, and growth, you’ll differentiate yourself from your competition in a tight labor market as most organizations have mediocre or sub-par cultures. Contact me and let’s talk about the issues you face and how I can help.
Jill Christensen is an employee engagement expert, best-selling author, and international keynote speaker. She is a Top 100 Global Employee Engagement Influencer, authored the best-selling book, If Not You, Who?, and works with the best and brightest global leaders to improve productivity and retention, customer satisfaction, and revenue growth. Jill can be reached at +1.303.999.9224 or firstname.lastname@example.org.