I’ve written a few blog posts in the last couple of months where I noticed I used these two words in conjunction – “Useless Unless.” Two little letters of difference, yet a tremendous differentiator.
Think of the ramifications in real life:
- The fastest car in the world is useless unless you put fuel in the tank.
- The best education is useless unless you put it to work.
- The most talented basketball player is useless unless you give him a basketball (and committed team) to play with.
- An incredibly delicious dinner party is useless unless you have friends and family to invite and share it with.
- Talented, high-potential employees are useless unless they know the end goal and how to help achieve it.
The missing element
What’s missing that’s most important? “E”
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- Encourage – We need encouragement at work. Encouragement isn’t just something to be given in tough times, but also to let people know they’re on the right track – their work has greater meaning and purpose in achieving the bigger picture.
- Extoll – Don’t forget the praise. Recognize people when they go above and beyond. Shout their achievements and contributions from the rooftops. Make sure they know their efforts are noticed, appreciated and valued.
- Engage – If you Encourage and Extol, you’ve taken a giant step forward in creating a work environment in which people choose to engage. And engaged employees are more productive, more easily retained and more beneficial to the bottom line.
What else is useless unless… ?
You can find more from Derek Irvine on his Recognize This! blog.