“Zapp!”, by William Byham shows a positive method to change employee’s work morale and self confidence for the better.The story is a contemporary fable that shows what supervisors, managers, and organizations must do to create and maintain an empowered workforce.The steps are easy to follow and can be applied to any workplace.
The beginning of the story presents us with a typical situation.The self-esteem and moral of the workforce is very low.Employees just care about showing up, doing the minimum they have to do to get by, and get paid at the end of the week.Little concern is given over each other and also the product.The supervisor, Joe Mode, is caught between upper management and the workers.He takes most of the responsibilities on himself which leads a busy and very stressful work environment.When Ralph Rosco, one of his employees, attempts to talk to him about a great idea, he immediately dismisses it since it isn’t one of Ralph’s responsibilities and that if it was that great, the research and development team already would have figured it out.
Not discouraged by his boss, Ralph begins working on his great idea.From being a normal employee that does the minimum and takes naps when he cans, Ralph begins to work on his idea during lunch breaks and coffee breaks, comes in to work a little bit earlier, and even finishes other projects faster to have more time.Other employees begin to find Ralph have more energy, seemed younger and happier.Finally, Ralph completes his great idea, the Ralpholator.After Ralph uses the device and disappears, Joe comes along looking for him and unintentionally uses the Ralpholator
When Joe accidentally entered the 12th dimension, he was surprised and did not understand what he was seeing. Ralph explained to Joe that the dark part of the twelfth dimension he was in was Department N and that the little light that is radiating is the employees moral and esteem.It took Joe a few minutes to realize it, because he thought everyone was pretty happy.Joe’s realization of what was wrong with Department N, came after his and Ralph’s visit the brilliant and radiant Department Z. It was there that they met Lucy Storm, the manager of Department Z.
Lucy shows her workers that she trusts them and believes in them. She always communicates with the employees, and lets them know how she feels about the tasks she asks them to do. She also assists her employees in any way she possibly can.By doing all of this, Lucy “zapps” her employees and gives them motivation.
Zapp is described in the story as being a force that energizes people with Sapp being the opposite.During the book, Joe keeps working and trying to understand how Lucy runs her department and what changes need to be made to made in order to “zapp” his employees.Joe finds out that the first step of zapping is to maintain self-esteem and that “After all those years of being Sapped, he reasoned, it was going to take lots of little Zapps to build up a positive charge in people.”The second step is to listen and respond with empathy.Actually listening what an employee says and being caring strengthens the relationship between boss and worker and builds trust.The third step is.