Employee Languishing: It’s a Real Thing

Are you feeling meh?

Let’s be real — there is a lot happening in the world right now. Mass shootings are pervasive and horrific, the war in Ukraine is devastating, and the pandemic journey is ever changing and exhausting. Many are assessing their career lives to consider how their values are being met, or not. I’m still a cup half full person and positivity is in my top 10 Strengthsfinder themes. However, I do believe the weight of the world is impacting how we navigate our daily lives, and some days just feel meh. The official definition of meh is expressing a lack of interest or enthusiasm. Meh even has an emoji.

How organizations can be proactive.

While finding your mojo is an individual experience, organizations can also take steps to address employee languishing. Here are actionable tactics from Adam Grant.

Culture of care.

I recently heard Jason Lippert, President, and CEO of LCI Industries talk about how he and his team initiated a cultural transformation to find creative ways to move the needle around leadership and culture. LCI initiated a transformation known as Everyone Matters and Lippert’s philosophy states, “By caring for others more genuinely while at work, you develop trusting relationships, your team members become like family, and family tends to stick together.”

Find your flow.

Languishing can also be the tipping point into burnout and leaders and organizations must be mindful about providing work environments that nurture wellbeing. It’s ok to have bad days — nobody likes the toxic positivity of the person who is artificially perky all the time. Honor your emotions and consider how you can bring more color into the grayscale of languishing or meh and move it towards motivation and flow.

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