5 Tips to Improve Employee Engagement
Gallup released an article, “The Worldwide Employee Engagement Crisis” revealing some startling statistics concerning how “engaged” employees are at work. According to Gallup research in the U.S. only 32% of employees are engaged in their work and globally only 13%. These are scary realizations, especially considering the negative effects of employee disengagement.
When employees are disengaged and not satisfied with their purpose in their organization the results can be quite costly and time consuming for organizations. For example, quality of employee work can diminish over time and lead to increased employee turnover. Turnover means more cost and strain on the business as a whole. However, if you improve employee engagement it can provide your company with higher profitability, reduced turnover, and better customer satisfaction.
There has been a trend toward just measuring employee engagement as an effective “Engagement Program.” But, merely measuring or capturing an employee’s dissatisfaction is not enough. Often times companies fail to make meaningful changes that can truly improve employee engagement. Metrics gathered from engagement surveys or measures should be the starting point of change and not the end. Essentially, metrics alone mean nothing unless they are used to make true changes to improve and encourage engagement.
Gallup concludes their engagement crisis article with great power and clarity stating,
“Creating a culture of engagement requires more than completing an annual employee survey and then leaving managers on their own, hoping they will learn something from the survey results that will change their daily behavior. It requires a company to take a close look at the critical engagement elements that align with performance and with the organization’s human capital strategy. Managers and leaders should keep employee engagement top of mind — because every interaction with employees can have an impact on engagement and organizational performance.”
5 tips to improve employee engagement
1. Start on day one.
Begin the engagement process on day one for each new employee. Don’t load their first day with mountains of paperwork, regulations, and policies. On an employee’s first day they will be filled with curiosity and questions. Let them explore your company’s culture, meet fellow co-workers, and even begin their work.
2. Leaders must lead.
Some of the companies with the most engaged employees have leaders who emulate and demonstrate that engagement. You can’t ask employees to be engaged and then not lead by example. The qualities and behavior you desire from your employees must first come from you. Companies where leaders are engaged have amazing results. Employees are 55% more engaged and 53% more focused when they can follow a leader’s example.
3. Show recognition and appreciation.
Some employees won’t know how much you appreciate them and their talents until you actually tell them. A simple “thank you” may make all the difference in encouraging and energizing an employee. Creating a culture of recognition and appreciation will ensure employees sense their value and importance to the company.
4. Work hard and play hard.
It may seem overly simple but having fun in the workplace is one way to encourage employee engagement. Having fun activities or special events from time to time really helps break up an employee’s routine. Doing so also helps foster an atmosphere of friendship and comradery. Examples of fun events could be a company picnic or a volunteer project that can be done as a team.
5. Hire for cultural fit.
A lot of emphasis is usually directed towards making sure companies are hiring candidates with the essential education or experience to meet the necessary job requirements. But are you hiring to meet cultural requirements? Look for candidates with the appropriate attitudes, behaviors, and personalities that will fit with your corporate culture.
Employee engagement is very important in today’s business world. We hope these 5 tips will aide your business in transforming your workplace to both attract new talent and revitalize current employees with engaging behavior.