Employee engagement is an important catalyst in the development and success of a business. Better employee engagement increases loyalty, staff and customer retention, company performance, company value, and a whole lot of other things that employee engagement can add to the fortune of an organization.
As an employer, you should do all you can in order to sustain employee engagement. Do not allow employee engagement to hit the rock in your organization because it will have a negative impact.
In this article, we will look at some of the ways employee engagement can be improved. Before we delve into the ways to improve employee engagement, we have to know the definition of the word itself.
Definitions Of Employee Engagement
A lot of scholars have defined employee engagement in their own words. Let us look at some of the accepted definitions of employee engagement.
Willis Towers Watson, a brokerage and advisory firm, defines employee engagement as the process of preparedness and ability of workers to give their best to the growth of an organization.
Aon Hewitt, another management consulting firm, defines employee engagement as the degree of intellectual capacity that workers put into the growth of an organization.
There are many other definitions of employee engagement but most of them are summed up well by Wikipedia.
The relation established is both qualitative and quantitative.
If you take a good look at all the definitions, you would find out that they have a lot of things in common. Only small differences exist between all the definitions.
Also, the definitions support the facts we brought up in the introductory part of the article. It points to the fact that employee engagement is extremely important in any organization.
Now, let’s try to find ways on what best can be done to improve employee engagement.
How To Improve Employee Engagement
We have given a background on the subject matter, and we have given some acceptable definitions, what is left is to look at how to improve employee engagement.
If you are an employer, and you have been looking for ways to improve employee engagement in your organization, then you will find what you are looking for. These tips, we are about to mention, will be useful for both employers and employees.
Employers Should Have Organizational Goal
Employees tend to work harder when they have a goal they are pursuing. The goal is what will serve as an inspiration.
Organizational goals should be set from the onset and each employee should be tutored on how to achieve the goal. Your job as an employer does not stop at teaching them the goals alone. It should extend to how the set goals so as to positively influence the business.
Aligning everyone with a common purpose is one of the best ways to develop successful work culture at your firm.
Also, you should not be excluded from the execution of the organizational goals because you are the boss. You have to lead by example. Excluding yourself from the organizational cores and values will send the wrong message to the employees.
Take Comments And Suggestions
No man is an island, and no man has a monopoly of knowledge. As an employer, the reason you recruit employees is that you feel you cannot do it all. Therefore, you must listen to comments from your employees.
Also, whenever your employees have suggestions, you should allow them to talk rather than shutting them down. Even if an employee’s suggestion would not be acted upon, the fact that he was allowed to speak will make the employee happy. When he or she has another suggestion the next time, he would not be afraid to speak up. Who knows if the suggestion they bring to the table another time might be what will benefit the company the most.
Also, there should be feedback channels like a suggestion box through which employees can pass messages to employers anonymously.
Sometimes, being anonymous is what an employee desires in order to pass a message. Not every employee has the courage to speak up in gatherings. Most of the times, anonymous comments and suggestions are usually the best pieces of advice.
Employer Should Be Fully Engaged In The Day to Day Running of the Organization
An employer has to be involved in the day-to-day running of the company. Employee engagement can be improved if employees get to see their boss frequently.
An employer that only shows up once in a while at the office might not get engagement from his employees. The way an employer runs an organization will have a direct impact on employees.
A study carried out in the United States of America as reported on SHRM shows that 34% of employees are engaged at work, which follows with the 35% of employers who report being engaged. The report further stated that 75% of workers’ engagement was recorded in organizations where the managers are enthusiastic and fervent about employees, and also contribute to the day-to-day running of the organization.
There are a lot of traits of disengaged employees vs an engaged employee. Some of these are:
- An Engaged employee goes above and beyond the given goals and targets.
- A disengaged employee would be self centred.
- An engaged behavior as work leads to passion for learning.
- A disengaged behavior would lead to negative attitude, pessimism and egocentrism.
The below snapshot from the above mentioned report on SHRM gives more engaged and disengaged behaviors at work organizations should be looking at.
The same report also quotes a 2017 Dale Carnegie study that said that only 26% of the leaders believed employee engagement was extremely important.
The below image gives further details on the study that speaks volume on the take of the leaders and top managers.
Emphasize That Employees Take Care Of Their Physical And Mental Health
Employees can only give their best when they know that their employer takes their physical and mental health seriously.
The Physical and mental initiative is one of the best ways to build engagement with employees. An employer should look for both short and long-term ways of taking care of the physical and mental health of employees. In the short term, a 5km workout can be organized bi-weekly or monthly while in the long term, frequent check-ups and issuance of medication can be adopted.
Employee engagement at workplace is going to the key differentiator between a successful and an unsuccessful firm.
The below video by Bonusly uses data driven tips to explain how employee engagement can be improved for success and to gain competitive advantage. Have a look at the video here:
As the video explained, the companies should focus on the points mentioned above, coach its leaders to maintain awareness and develop a great feedback mechanism.
Employee wellness and an integrated and inclusive workplace culture helps companies have a more engaged workforce. The end result, higher profits, a better brand, happy customers and a happier workforce.