- Sometimes, employees get "lost in their work"
- Athletes refer to this as being "in the zone"
- You're so focused on what you're doing that you lose track of time
- This is a psychological state called "flow"
- Flow is a coaching technique
Flow is way to increase employee engagement and their discretionary effort.
Coaching point - when employees disengage, it's often because they're either a.) overly anxious; or b.) bored to death. Flow requires enough of a challenge to keep people interested, but too much challenge creates anxiety. The type of direction, goals and challenges you give people is key!
People get lost in their work when they (1)...
- Know what to do
- Know how to do it
- Know how well they're doing
- Know where to go (if support is required)
- Avoid distractions
- Feel capable
- Feel challenged
HOW TO CREATE FLOW
- Give clear direction - so they know what, why and how to do something
- Provide immediate feedback - so they know how they're doing
- Make it a challenge - a reasonable challenge that will test their skills
Coaching point - any feedback is enjoyable so long as it's related to the goal
COACHING POINT - challenges that require most of the person's skill set or more effective (2)
- Schaffer, Owen (2013), A Method to Facilitate Flow, Human Factors International
- Csikszentmihalyi (1990), Flow: The psychology of optimal experience.