In addition to calculating an overall engagement score, E3’s employee engagement survey also breaks results into three leadership dimensions: focus, capability, and mindset. Each of these dimensions encompasses a unique component of employee engagement to give a thorough understanding of a leader’s performance. Let’s dive into each category and its relationship with engagement.


Focus allows employees to channel their efforts and reduces the distractions that dilute their performance. Six of the questions in the survey roll up into a combined score on focus to highlight employees’ clarity around expectations, their immediate tasks, where the organization is headed, and their role in facilitating the organization’s success.

Managers and other leaders must ensure that employees are focused on the most important tasks and that they support and encourage conditions that increase mental acuity – like clear directions, the ability to ask questions, and transparent, two-way communication. You can also promote focus by ensuring your team understands the organization’s mission and vision.


The second dimension, capability, uses seven questions to assess whether employees believe they have the necessary tools, resources, training, and collaboration to get their job done. You can’t have a team of A-players who go above and beyond if you aren’t first equipping them to do so. When team members are able to use their strengths daily and they feel supported by their team, engagement increases as a direct result.

Inversely, capability also means employees are not inhibited by dysfunctional or unfair processes within the organization. As a leader, you are responsible to advocate for your employees when you see situations arise that impinge their ability to perform well.


The third leadership dimension is mindset. Having the right mindset (or attitude) is essential for any employee to maximize his or her value to the organization. This is one of the most challenging areas for management: What can be done to improve morale, commitment to the organization, or accountability?

Employees must want to do a good job and they must have the will to perform at their best. There are many factors that impact this – factors a manager does have at least some control over – such as trust, a felt sense of safety, a relational (versus transactional) culture, fairness, and a sense of purpose. Mindset boils down to the quality of relationships employees have with their manager and their colleagues, the levels of trust they experience, whether their opinions count, and whether they’re valued for more than the work they produce.

Leaders who encourage these conditions will have more effective teams and more engaged employees overall. Because mindset is critical to an employee’s engagement level in the organization, half of the questions (fifteen) in our survey contribute to the mindset score.

Key Takeaways

  • When employees have a positive mindset (resulting from feeling valued, strong collaboration, and a felt sense of safety), clear focus, and the tools and training enabling full capability, they are dramatically more likely to be committed to their organization and deeply engaged in their work.
  • To learn more about focus, capability, and mindset, join our Manager Resource Center where we offer tools and strategies for increasing engagement on these leadership dimensions.