I was recently honored with the title of Golden Fish! Actually, it is a big deal – for me – even though you’ve never heard of it.

It’s something that we’ve been doing this year in Small Fish Business Coaching to recognize contribution and achievement. The best part is that it’s a recognition of my peers in the company, people I work closely with and deeply respect.

The emotional impact is the most important part. Which got me thinking …

A whole lot of what we do in creating great organizations is emotional. Sure, we write job descriptions, and we have key goals and metrics.

But to be honest, that’s not what keeps people engaged in their jobs.

Instead, workers stay engaged because of the people they work with and the emotional bonds which are created. Those are two very distinct things!

A great example is when people get attached to their co-workers and boss even though the company is … well, a company that does stuff. This happens very often if I’m in a supportive role rather than a direct product-producing role. The job is OK, I might even be pretty good at it, but I stick around because I get to work with people I like and respect.

Conversely, someone can be more attached to the organization than to co-workers. This happens a lot when you have a clear and compelling mission that I care about, but I don’t have to heavily rely on the people around me. They’re co-workers, but not really friends.

We see this a lot when jobs switch to working-from-home for 18 months. And counting.

For me personally, I was attracted to Small Fish because of the mission and culture, which has only become stronger in recent years. And I stay because the people are generous, supportive, and committed to each other.

What a great win-win!