Perspectives, Issues, Research and Practice
Edited by Simon L. Albrecht
Chapter 1: Employee Engagement: 10 Key Questions for Research and Practice
Simon L. Albrecht Introduction The concept of employee engagement has generated enormous interest in both academic and practitioner domains. Macey et al. (2009) recently commented: “rarely has a term . . . resonated as strongly with business executives as employee engagement has in recent years” (p. xv). In addition there has been a significant spike in the amount of academic research being published on employee engagement over the past 5–10 years. So much so that it is probably no longer the case that “Much of what has been written about employee engagement comes from the practitioner literature and consulting firms. There is a surprising dearth of research on employee engagement in the academic literature” (Saks, 2006, p. 600). Despite the proliferation in engagement-related research, and despite enormous advances having been made about how best to understand and manage engagement, a number of fundamental issues remain unresolved. While there are no doubt many more than 10 such issues, the purpose of this chapter is to highlight 10 key issues or questions facing researchers and practitioners working in the field of work-related engagement. The 10 key questions are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. How do we define engagement and what are its key characteristics and constituents? Is it “old wine in a new bottle”? What theories can be used to explain engagement? Can we have too much engagement? Are there fluctuations in engagement across the working day and working week? How do we measure engagement? What are the key...
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