By business articles and experts like Harvard Business and the Fiscal Times reputation is brought up over and over. Though in many cases not directly said reputations are being discussed. Even though employee engagement, motivation, spending cuts, and asking more may be the topics, the reflection is on the companies. Here’s an example. http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Articles/2012/01/21/Too-Cheap-with-Your-Valued-Staff-Know-the-Risks.aspx
When the economy is poor the companies are in even more power. Really where is an employee going to go? The perception is there are no jobs out there. But as stated so well in the above article there will be repercussions. But instead of employees leaving let’s talk about when they quit and stay.
If employee disengagement is getting mentioned this is really about employees doing the least or minimum in their jobs. In other words they are getting by. It’s not bad enough for termination and it’s not good enough for recognition and praise. For various reason but mostly because there is now a dis-connect from their manager or company and there is a feeling they are not cared about. Thus the response becomes quitting, well as much as is possible and still keep the job.
There is a lot of talk happening about employee engagement because it has huge costs. There are the monetary costs of course but there are also the costs in poor customer service, employees being indifferent or showing frustrations, customers leaving, employees leaving, and yes the company’s reputation.
What the discussions need to start focusing on is the ways to correct this. This is not and will not be a quick fix. Nor should it be. Once the training has been done to the front line managers and the employees are responding with more engagement there must also be an emphasis on the maintenance of the team.
Everything a manager or business does affects the reputation. And employees notice.