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Susan M. Heathfield

Tap Employee Discretionary Effort

By October 10, 2013

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Are you interested in knowing how to tap employee discretionary energy?

The fundamental building block to effective work production and customer satisfaction is people who work well together.

People must be engaged in and excited about their jobs, and direct their energy and commitment to ensure happy customers. If all of their energy and work commitment is tied up in dealing with unpleasant relationships with coworkers, there is not a lot of energy left over for serving customers.

Or, in a worse scenario, the negativity an employee feels about coworkers flows over into their relationship and interaction with the person they exist to serve - the customer.

Discretionary Effort Rules

There is a concept called discretionary energy or discretionary effort. This is the effort / energy that an employee chooses to exert in service to coworkers or customers at work - or not.

An employer pays for the fundamental tasks that he hires an employee to perform. The employee's willingness to perform above and beyond the basic requirements of the job is a reflection of the employee's willingness to engage his or her discretionary effort / energy.

From an employer's point of view, the more employee discretionary effort or energy that you can tap, the better your potential for well-served customers.

You also increase your potential for happy employees. A happy employee is positively interacting with customers and coworkers and experiencing all of the work benefits that accrue as a result of these positiveinteractions.

Examples of Discretionary Effort in Action

Won't you take the time to share an example of a time when you, a coworker, or a reporting staff person went the extra mile and tapped into their discretionary effort to accomplish an objective at work. Whether every day job performnce or a significant event, your examples will help all of us appreciate the power of discretionary effort. Tell us about a time when discretionary effort came into play.

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