Use data from employee surveys to figure out how to move beyond engagement to a broader organizational unity, writes Art Johnson. “When the top managers lead, communicate, and create in accordance with a shared mission and vision, the destructive conflict lower down in the organization is drastically reduced,” he writes.



Employee engagement has become the standard for understanding how employees feel about working at your organization.

Organizational alignment is the next step in evolution beyond engagement. Organizational alignment and employee engagement both have their place. But if you want to see increases in performance and metrics, you want to look at measures that are organizationally focused, not employee focused.

The differences add up

Here are specific areas in which organizational alignment differs from employee engagement — and can affect the bottom line.

Organizational alignment adds purpose

Organizational alignment takes employee engagement and adds a layer of purpose.
Employees may like what they do, but are their roles deeply connected to the reason the organization exists? To take an extreme example, say you hire someone to take nails out of boards to repurpose the wood.

If they spend their days enthusiastically driving more nails into the boards, they may be highly engaged, but they are not serving the organization’s purpose.

Organizational alignment is more relevant to your primary business concerns

Most of the questions you ask about your business are actually central to organizational alignment, not employee engagement, even if that doesn’t seem apparent at first glance.