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The Value of Trusted Relationships in the Workplace

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Obviously, there is a lot we still have to discover regarding the mysteries of the brain. But there are also some very clear insights that have begun to emerge regarding what underlies human behavior. Research at the University of Virginia under the brilliant eye of cognitive neuroscientist James Coan, PhD, tells us a lot about our need for relationships we can count on in good times and bad. He explains how we evolved in a “social ecology,” in groups that enhanced our survival and how we can now measure the benefits of safe and secure attachments. Employees with trusted relationships at work, for example, have shown much higher levels of workplace engagement. At Engagient, we focus on three foundational emotional needs: safety (physical and emotional), safe and secure attachments, and the need for meaning or purpose.

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Don Rheem’s presentation on Employee Engagement gets underneath the real “whys” on the behavior of discretionary effort. I found his examples to be relative and understandable. I see how our leaders are making better connections with the hearts of our people, so everyone better understands the goals of the enterprise.

--Peter Rittenhouse, Director of Supply Chain
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