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Passionate employees

Posted by Meg Bear on May 17, 2010


Our own Amy Wilson writes an interesting comment to Mark’s post and I think we should investigate this more.

For those keeping score at home, yes I am writing a post, about Amy’s comment to Mark’s post.

People wonder how I write so many blogs, and all I can say is it’s a gift.

Amy Wilson said

May 16, 2010 at 11:45 pm I was really intrigued by “the John’s” assertion that employee satisfaction is a useless metric – that what you really want is passion. This got me thinking about how passion compares with engagement. It seems that passionate employees are a subset of engaged and actively disengaged employees … and that engagement is a circular continuum rather than a linear one (much like politics) – that there is a fine line between the most actively engaged employees and the most actively disengaged ones. The question is: are you harnessing your passion for good or evil in your company?

In fact, the point that struck me on this topic was the comment made that the most passionate people are often not the happiest.

Their passion can often lead to dissatisfaction when they see progress stalling.  I know that to be true in my own past experiences.  If I do not channel my passion constructively, it can eat away at me in a very destructive way.

Notice my choice of words here

I have to be accountable and mindful of  my passionate personality.

I need to make sure that I put that passion to good use.

The same is true for those of us who have the benefit of leading passionate people, it becomes our job to put that passion to work for the benefit of the company.  If we don’t, it’s not only an engagement problem, it can become a morale killer for the entire team.

With great gifts comes great responsibility. 

Finding and focusing your passion is the key to unlocking your own greatness, or the source of your own downfall.

You decide.

2 Responses to “Passionate employees”

  1. I can’t seem to phrase a response to this that I like. But I think you’ve touched on a really important point. Passionate employees turned disenchanted or burned out do more harm than good. But if that’s happening, it could point to a management problem. And maybe there’s a mismatch between passionate employees and companies where progress happens slowly. So, everyone says they want passionate employees, but do they really? The real test is whether passionate employees stay passionate.

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