Episode 57: Data for Shaping Better Employee Experiences

There’s more to people analytics than nudging people into offer desired behaviors. It can be used to empower employees and teams to find their own solutions to better performance and personal experience in the workplace. Kevin Campbell, Employee Experience Scientist at Qualtrics and Founder of Lifted Leadership, shares his experiences on people analytics done right and why coaching is indispensable for getting the most out of performance.

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Episode Highlights


What employee experience scientists actually do


Factors that influence employee engagement levels


The role of novelty in employee experience


Four data loops that inform employee experience


Using data to empower team collaboration and customer loyalty


Two definitions of engagement


Coaching as an indispensable tool for performance management


Importance of sequencing of content in performance conversations


Coaching’s positive affect on decision-making quality


Figuring out your sweet spot for adding value to others

Kevin’s view on the greatest unmet wellbeing need at work today

“People being able to do what they do best every day, and to be able to do their job. I think one of the things that leaders can lose sight of sometimes is that people naturally want to do well in their role and they want to do the job that needs to be done. And things that get in the way of that are things that that get in the way of your organization's success.

There are times with salary negotiations where maybe an employee's best interests don't always necessarily line up with the best interest of the organization that they work for. And that's just the fact of the matter. But the vast majority of the time, your interests are in alignment. And the more that you can keep sight of that, the more that you can approach, your decisions, from the perspective of people naturally are responsible, they want to do a good job. And the way that that comes across, and every decision that you make truly empowering people to do, what they already want to do, is what will lead to more engagement, less burnout, and, and really enabling people to do what they do best and stay within that, that TLC (talent, love and commerce).

And part of it is empowering people to be able to do that on their own to realize that they have more autonomy than they might realize. But sometimes, just inspiring and letting people know that they actually have some power to craft things. That they have stamp [of approval that says], Go do something that you haven't thought of, in order to make this more amenable to what you do. So I think I think that's the biggest unmet need with regard to wellbeing at work.”

What “working with humans” means to Kevin

“Daniel Kahneman summarized his work into the finding that that 70% of our decisions are not based on reason or logic. They're based on emotion and heuristics. And recognizing that's not necessarily a bad thing. And that bemoaning that is not going to get you anywhere. But working with humans is…leaning into it in a way that gives you the opportunity to get the best out of people create the best experiences.

I'm a huge Starbucks addict. And you could argue that the coffee from McDonald's is probably just as high quality, if not higher quality than Starbucks, but there's something about the emotional experience that I have. That's not rational. And that's okay. And leaning into that is what creates a better experience because your experiences are more than just the objective facts of the situation. It's the interplay between the objective facts and your subjective experience. And, and that's something to be embraced and to work with, and that's what it means to work with humans.”


Read: Why We Do What We Do, Edward Deci
Read: Drive by Dan Pink

Michael Glazer is the creator and host of Humans At Work. His purpose in life is to make well-being at work a globally-accepted, basic human right. Learn more about Michael here.