Leading Edge - The Right Fit: keeping staff engaged at the workplace

Leading Edge - The Right Fit: keeping staff engaged at the workplace

"The Right Fit: keeping staff engaged at the workplace" with Professor Karen Jansen


Employers look for the best fit when recruiting for their organisation: they look for someone who will fit to their core values and culture. But fit isn’t static, even though neither company nor individual probably think about it again.

In Karen’s podcast she explores the four different ‘fits’ in the workplace and how fit changes over time, impacting whether people stay with an organisation.

Which companies get it? What do you do about the misfits?


Listen to what Karen has to say about…

The four types of organisational fit that she has identified, and what characterises their behaviour:

1. Trader

2. Striver

3. Team player

4. Caretakers

Hear more of Karen’s research into organisational fits and why it’s important to differentiate these types.


It’s not necessarily just about retention. It’s about making sure that when you’re employing somebody, you’re getting the most out of them.

Who would Karen ask to a dinner party…

Rather than names Karen suggests type of leaders she would like to be there:

  • Altruistic – someone selfless who listens like the Dalai Lama or Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Unassuming – quiet, humble and well trusted, probably at the lower level of organisation like Howard Schulz, founder of Starbucks
  • Momentary – in the right place at the right time and rallies people together

Karen’s predictions for 2030 are…

Karen: I would like to think we will be working fewer hours or fewer days and having much better work life balance:

  • Have to rethink the work week.
  • Allow technology to transform our work lives and free up more time.
  • Importance of choice to work longer if you wish, not legislation
  • Henley research showing 4-day week more productive, impacts retention

She later added:
“Regarding the predictions for 2030 – the Covid 19 crisis has certainly increased our ability and capability for working from home and managing our time differently, which will influence how we organise and work in the future. Compared to when I recorded this prediction, we are even more poised to reconstruct the work week and work place than ever before.”

Professor Karen Jansen

Professor Karen Jansen’s research examines aligning evolving talent with strategic goals, and creating and sustaining momentum over the course of strategic or cultural change. She is currently exploring how to maintain change engagement across multiple change initiatives simultaneously without leading to change fatigue. Karen has consulted and collaborated with military, manufacturing, financial, and professional service organisations. She has designed and delivered a variety of executive education programmes, doctoral seminars, and MBA modules.


This recording was made between 28/02/20 and 05/03/20.