Work Diary: disengagement is not necessarily a bad thing


All these years I worked on building an engaged workforce. 

Coupled with cultural alignment where even void of a decision maker or an authoritative nod, everyone would know what the best decision is and subsequently the right action to take.
I knew I had succeeded when good or bad, our culture or core value statements were quoted.  
This to me is similar to public relations; good or bad, it’s still publicity. 
Naturally, those who know me well will say it’s very Penelope; love or hate me, it ain’t matter. 
I have made an impression.
Over the last two months and a bit, while recollecting Gallup’s Q12 questions in my head, I can say safely my answers fall on the left hand side of the spectrum; the strongly disagree or simply put:
“I am dis-engaged!”
Initially, I had thought it was a matter if time that I would get acclimatized. 
Things will fall into place and all would be fine.
But now, I am beginning to believe that disengagement is notnecessarily a bad thing
Personally at least.
Organizationally, they are screwed, but who gives two hoots?
Disengaged, remember?
…………………it’s always there. 
I don’t think anyone can stripe me naked from it. 
Likewise with my value-system. 
In tandem, they create combustible magic – for me. 
Hence, quality of my work is never compromised, but the altruism is slightly shifted – it’s about me and my pride in my produces. Yes, I flinch when I am forced to put the two finishing touches; the logo at the top right hand corner and the tag line at the bottom left hand corner. My high levels of compliance stops me from omitting them, but the silly rebellious part of me gives me more redundant work formatting documents as I refuse to use the pre-set templates, preferring to open a blank doc and adjusting the contents later as I insert the footer and header last.
Silly? absolutely.
But it gives me that quick tiny jolt of excitement.
Being disengaged renders me quasi-emotionless
So, all of a sudden I am able to exhibit consistent composure even when hell breaks lose. 
Of course my executive personal coach  had a hand to play in this progress, and so does my ‘grandpopsie’ and ‘mom’ who is updated almost daily on my progress …
Though I would by nature ‘fight’ till it’s a win-win, these days I let the (stinky) ‘garbage truck’ go by and settle for: you win some, you lose some.
Being disengaged doesn’t get me reacting when people say for instance: ‘we need to do more engagement activities like games, makan-makan’
Yes, we are Asians. 
Yes, makan-makanis THE thing for Asians (besides shopping for designer wares) … but the thing is what’s the fixation and fetish with gorge your self, stuff your face and pump your body with carcinogen causing food to get everyone engaged?
This comes even from the Head of Human Capital. The makan-makan comment that is.
And that too is met with calmness and serenity on my part.
In my previous life, it would muster a lot of self-control from blurting out:
You idiot!
Engagement is not just about gatherings, food, social activities, sports, more prizes, more benefits, more bonus.
This would be followed by an ardous explanation of what it is and ideas on how to build engagement.
Now? I smile and walk away …
Why bother? 
They fail on every front of the Q12.
REWARDS is uniform (and pathetic) if you are a minion and not one of those ‘tigers guarding their hills’.
LOYALTY (and dead woods) are considered good.
SHOW STOPPERS, NEGATIVITY and ‘GARBAGE TRUCKS‘ are allowed to blow their horns, applauded and placed on the pedestal (read: endorsed by Management).
LEADERs don’t exist – not even at the Level 3 or Level 4 (in reference to Jim Collins’ classification).
MANAGERs are Hitlers & Mao with a dash of maverick antics.
CULTURE – A(mpu)B(odek)C(ucuk) permeates and the ‘divide and rule’ is encouraged.
And they wonder why people leave; especially the young blood.
I should have gone with my heart and not stuck to my values.
Screw values, when no one else has any notion of what it is, let alone lives it – this is my close to 3-month lesson learned here. 

5 thoughts on “Work Diary: disengagement is not necessarily a bad thing

  1. kc – I am nearly 1 hour late everyday. In my mid-term probationary assessment the boss marked me as "strengths" (highest scoring/standard choice) for tardiness … that's clear condonation!:)I got "satisfactory" for "judgement" and was rather upset about it given the scenario … but now I reflect I should get "EXTREMELY BAD" for it for having chosen to join them in the first place!!!!rofl

  2. im disengaged on purpose.-can speak my mind without giving two hoots -dont have to attend some lame internal parties-dont have to pick up calls after 5.15-clock out sharp!

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