The engagement scores puzzle

We continue to talk with organizations who do engagement surveys which often measure the symptoms rather than root causes of culture. 

Symptoms tend to theme around the usual satisfaction metrics that judge the adequacy of bosses, environments, career opportunities and the like. Root causes are individual and team habits in the areas of belonging, purpose, learning, courage and self-care.  

When you're basing your action plans on symptoms, you will logically actually make your engagement scores go down. That's the empirical definition of a symptom: when you act on it you make things worse. Engagement can only improve to the degree that action plans directly focus on the habits of root cause.