Cognitive Computing Authors: Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, William Schmarzo, Shelly Palmer

Blog Feed Post

Social Perspectives for the CTO: Engaging Tomorrow = Leadership Today


Editor’s note: We first saw this blog at WayIn and asked Bryan Douglass to repost here. We believe the conclusions in this post are relevant to most organizations today, especially federal government organizatioins. – bg.

Times have been tough. Consumers lack comfort in spending and businesses are struggling for comfort without them. As a result, professional environments across the globe are experiencing new levels of stress, pushing those discomforts into the workplace… bringing the true damage of these struggles full circle as business owners and leaders find faith is failing not only amongst those they hope to serve, but also amongst the staff they hire to serve them.

The challenges of today have brought the importance of employee engagement – and the lack of knowledge surrounding this hot-button issue – back to the main stage. A recent study published by the Bureau of National Affairs suggests decreased productivity and increased turnover resulting of disengaged employees has cost American businesses over $11 billion over the last year. The Gallup Organization estimates this number jumps to $300 billion worldwide.

As you can imagine, an epidemic causing this much damage brings a few stories to the surface. We found three recent tales of professional hardship tied to employee engagement, each offering unique perspective of a unique scenario from a unique location… all supporting the same critical engagement lesson.


Ashleigh Patterson, a correspondent for Yahoo! Finance, offered this report on employee sentiment in Canada.Citing a recent report from Ipsos Reid, Patterson reports, “the majority of Canadians have little trust or confidence in the senior leadership of their organizations, causing the country’s workforce to appear disengaged and downright disgruntled.”

The Ipsos Reid study shows only 44% of Canadian employees expressed “confidence” in senior leaders. Piling on, Patterson adds results from the Canadian Management Centre suggesting only 40% of those employees trust what senior leaders say. Patterson also notes the Towers Watson study (one we’ve quoted several times on the Wayin blog) where results suggest 67% of Canadian workers aren’t fully engaged in their current positions due to insufficient support from their organizations.

Robert Longley took to the US Government pages of About.com with a recent report from the Government Accountability Office. Using data gathered in 2011 from the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, the GEO found employees at the Department of Homeland Security – one of the most renown and trusted departments in the US federal government – are struggling.

“DHS employees have 4.5% lower job satisfaction and 7.0% lower engagement in their work than other government workers… The survey shows the TSA’s airport security screeners are 13% unhappier and 14% less engaged with their jobs than TSA’s administrative office staff.”

Here’s the problem: the GAO report suggests TSA first started noticing this trend in 2006, five years prior to this 2011 study, and those challenges have since advanced, grown and continue to create additional challenges throughout the organization. “GAO found that despite having broad performance metrics in place to track and assess DHS employee morale on an agency-wide level, DHS does not have specific metrics within the action plans that are consistently clear and measurable.”


Eric Collins is the managing director of plastics manufacturer Nampak in London. He recently spoke at the Engage For Success event, using the opportunity to reach England’s business leaders and media, touting a stern message of change.

“I do believe there is a blockage caused by old-fashioned outdated businesses… Any business can create an engagement culture, not just the blue chip companies. It’s about changing leadership style and awareness and being open to all information available.”

Collins – joined by keynote speaker Archie Norman – used this event platform to encourage a simple message on behalf of disengaged staff: “I am not a human resource. I’m a human being.” Tanith Dodge, the HR director at Marks and Spencer, expounds: “This is not an HR issue, it’s not a survey, it’s about leadership, values, respect and praise.”



In each of the stories above – whether we’re looking at the Great White North, on the other side of the pond, or in our own backyard – we find stable, established organizations who have recognized the importance of employee engagement with the means to identify, analyze and rectify almost any issue… and in all three cases, the problems persists.

They persist due to failures in leadership.

In our Canadian example, workers point a direct finger at lacking support from leadership as their cause of ongoing concern. Here in the States, the workforce suggests the problems are no secret, yet they march on (and possibly evolve) due to a lack of effort from those in power to institute change. On the Europe’s prominent island, progressive leaders are urging those from the old school to change their ways before this new generation of worker flees for a better way of business.

The lesson is clear. Employee engagement studies are wonderful for helping an organization recognize opportunity to improve… but the study is not the improvement, and it may influence improved employee engagement, the study will not make it a reality.

That job lies with leadership.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley writes on enterprise IT. He is a founder of Crucial Point and publisher of CTOvision.com

@ThingsExpo Stories
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities - ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups.
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Predicting the future has never been more challenging - not because of the lack of data but because of the flood of ungoverned and risk laden information. Microsoft states that 2.5 exabytes of data are created every day. Expectations and reliance on data are being pushed to the limits, as demands around hybrid options continue to grow.
As IoT continues to increase momentum, so does the associated risk. Secure Device Lifecycle Management (DLM) is ranked as one of the most important technology areas of IoT. Driving this trend is the realization that secure support for IoT devices provides companies the ability to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure offerings faster, create new revenue streams, and reduce support costs, all while building a competitive advantage in their markets. In this session, we will use customer use cases...
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
DevOpsSummit New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DXWorldEXPO within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of bus...
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors! In this blog post, we provide 7 tips on how, as part of our world-class faculty, you can deliver one of the most popular sessions at our events. But before reading...
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICOHOLDER named "Media Sponsor" of Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO. ICOHOLDER give you detailed information and help the community to invest in the trusty projects. Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO has opened its Call for Papers. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO also offers s...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
The IoT Will Grow: In what might be the most obvious prediction of the decade, the IoT will continue to expand next year, with more and more devices coming online every single day. What isn’t so obvious about this prediction: where that growth will occur. The retail, healthcare, and industrial/supply chain industries will likely see the greatest growth. Forrester Research has predicted the IoT will become “the backbone” of customer value as it continues to grow. It is no surprise that retail is ...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO" has announced that its Call for Papers is now open. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expe...
Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo have announced the conference tracks for Cloud Expo 2018. Cloud Expo will be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, and November 6-8, 2018, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DX Expo within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive ov...