Why You’re Not All That Engaging

Because you’re so clueless, you use words like “engaging” just because they’re the latest buzzword.

Because you look away from me when I’m talking to you, like that “how fast can I get out of here” kind of look.

You check your goddamn PHONE! YOU DON’T HAVE ANY EMAILS!

Because you don’t listen to a single word I say. Not one. You’re too busy waiting for a turn to talk.

Because you’re so full of yourself. YOUR ideas, your methodologies. G-d, I can tell you are so FULL OF CRAP!

Because you insist that you are right and I am wrong. When I know you’re wrong! And you know it, too.

Because you haven’t got a single clue about what tasks are “on task” versus which are “off.” You call yourself an innovator, but you think like an Army drill sergeant.

Because you never really read anything. I can tell. You have nothing to say. That’s boring.

Because your staff meetings are filled – just FILLED – with dead air. Plus fear. The lousy, stinking stench of the death of great thoughts.

Because you always talk at people, even in the copy we write for online. Who wants to read your piles and piles of drivel?


Because you insist on approving all my Tweets.

Because you’re just so, so shallow and egotistical and self-promoting and…you know what? You’re just plain BAD.

You’re not engaging because you don’t like people. Someone hit you over the head when you were a kid, or they dropped you on your head or you somehow fell down a flight of stairs, and now it’s the fault of the rest of the world.

So no matter how shiny your bright smile is, I can see your evil filthy soul beneath.

Truly engaging people are humble and inherently good.

You, unfortunately are not one of them.

Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal is a seasoned communications professional with nearly two decades of progressive, varied experience in the public sector, private sector, and academia. Currently she is a public servant, as well as an independent freelance writer. This blog, like all of her public content, is written in her personal capacity unless otherwise noted. It does not reflect the views of the U.S. government, in whole or in part. Photo by Adam Jones / Wikipedia

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Mike Harding

In coaching, I like to tell managers, “employees who are not engaged are not engaged because they are not engaged.”
Leadership, true leadership, is about heading the ship in the right direction, letting the crew do their jobs and not whipping the oarsmen.
Every Captain is incapable of getting the ship to its destination on his own. You chose us, now let us help.


I read many of the articles from govloop and was surprised at this one. Not only the language–which was coarse–but the tone of the entire article was angry. I felt like someone was yelling the whole time I read it. Yes, I read the complete article hoping for a positive wrap up and was sorely disappointed. I did not find this helpful or encouraging in the least. And, govloop, you can provide all the disclaimers you wish, but it is your responsibility to provide something better than a writer spewing her venom.

Dannielle Blumenthal

Hi Donna,

I appreciate your comment and wanted to take a minute to clarify the intention behind the post, because I can see where you are coming from.

The blog is not actually negative, it’s positive, although it might not seem that way at first. It is meant to give voice to the frustration that people feel when they’re ignored, and then on top of it are confronted by official corporate communication that is meant to engage them. (There’s another blog I wrote, “I hate meetings and they stink,” along similar lines…we all want better meetings!)

On a deeper level, it’s also supposed to be somewhat humorous and self-deprecating. I am a teacher, a writer, and a person in authority and I know how annoying I can be when I go on and on. Also that I’m not the greatest listener, and fairly addicted to my smartphone.

So that person being dis-engaging is sometimes me. I don’t like it!

Though it may sound strange, I write my blogs as a way of communicating with myself as much as to the reader. I want to be a better contributor at work, and also a better wife and mom – a better person for other people to relate to. (Actually I asked my daughter to read it, and she looked up and said, this is the G-d’s honest truth: “You wrote that about yourself.”)

So it is about being uplifting. For us GovLoopers, and I do consider myself one, I want to see a workplace where corporate communication is straightforward, honest, and compelling so that we can both be more productive and lift morale at the same time.

This is one of the guiding passions of my life, actually – a more humane workplace for people. A more humane world. I hate it when people treat each other badly, and I hate it when I make those kind of mistakes.

Tonight is the first night of Chanukah – Jewish holiday of miracles – maybe a miracle will happen and we’ll all decide to start getting along.


Sorry for the longish answer, but it was important to me that you know I’m not here to hate on anybody, ever.