Want to know what types of things will help your employees feel more engaged? Ask them. You might be surprised by how simple the solution may be.
Measuring employee engagement is important. Measuring the right things -- those that matter most to performance and provide a framework for positive change -- is crucial.
Engaged workers stand apart from their not-engaged and actively disengaged counterparts because of the discretionary effort they consistently bring to their roles. These employees will go the extra mile, work with passion, and feel a profound connection to their company. They are the people who will drive innovation and move your business forward.
However, the question is not measuring the engagement itself but rather how do we improve employee engagement.
Today more than ever, organizations rely on the energy, commitment and engagement of their workforce in order to survive and thrive in the twenty-first century.
Start at the top- “Walking the talk” is the single most effective employee engagement strategy any company can deploy. Employees must see the leadership demonstrating the characteristics and behaviours everyone else is being asked to display. In companies where leaders model the desired behaviour, employees are 55 percent more engaged, 53 percent more focused and more likely to stay at the company.
Recognition & Appreciation- Say ‘thank you’. It’s such a simple thing, but it’s often overlooked, especially in large organizations. Acknowledgement by management and among peers is the quickest way to build trust, restore strained relationships and energize the workplace. Employees with supportive supervisors are more likely to stay with the company and are more engaged. This is where most people get it wrong, employees are not motivated or engaged when appreciated through bonuses as they are when appreciated by supervisors through oral recognition and appreciation.
Be transparent- Management transparency has a direct 94 percent correlation with employee happiness. Trusting employees with sensitive information gives them a sense of deeper investment in the company and helps to create a more cooperative team atmosphere, as opposed to an “us versus them” perception of the management-employee relationship.
Hire Traits and Behaviors- Experience and education don’t guarantee performance. 21st-century companies are quickly moving away from hiring people just because they are smart or bright but are also seeking character. Even the most skilled candidate will fail if he or she has a poor attitude. What's more, some people simply cannot be engaged. Emphasize hiring for and promoting the right behaviours and personality traits for your culture. Also, ensure you offer training in desired skills.
Respectful treatment- Regardless of rank or position, mutual respect must be maintained and especially from the supervisors to their juniors. Respecting your juniors’ views and opinions and allowing them to have a voice and not just be given order makes them feel appreciated and thus increases their level of engagement. There is a sense of loyalty that develops in such employees that increases their engagement.
The "secret" to building employee engagement is that there is no secret. Want to know what types of things will help your employees feel more engaged? Ask them. You might be surprised by how simple the solution may be. Often, it comes down to the Golden Rule: Treat people as you’d want to be treated. And, save your money on those expensive consultants, programs and other costly approaches. Compassion, mutual respect, kindness and flexibility don’t cost a thing.