How to increase employee engagement in the workplace
Category : BLOG
Line Managers with low employee engagement scores can continue to get rewarded for operational excellence for as long as the company also remains ignorant of implications, ignorance is bliss right?
On the other hand, employees are just like customers. Everyday they make choices to either stay or go elsewhere to get what they want, these choices are based on employee perceptions that relate relationships with their managers. Often in organizations, some employees may often receive better treatment than others. Why is that?
Some employees report to good managers who have good people management skills, yet others may report to managers that don’t have these skills, also sometimes a few receive certain privileges. Either way, I have good news to tell!
Trends have changed, managers aren’t the only ones who have the privilege to appraise. Organisations are changing this, people with direct reports are expected to account for employee perceptions. Annually, employee perception measures include how well your boss is doing in leading you.
Line Managers are required to do just as well in leading people as in managing operational affairs.
Today company culture audits focus on understanding employee experiences. Staff is asked about their perceptions of:
- Company products and services, whether they believe that is top-notch or not
- The company they work for, whether they would recommend it as the best company to work for
- The boss they report to, whether they would recommend their boss as “the boss” to work for
- Resources and support, whether they feel adequately capable to succeed in their jobs
Smart employers have figured this out, they are not only investing their efforts in understanding consumer and market needs, but in their annual budgets they are now spending on employee engagement tools to give them insights into what makes people want to work for them and why they would stay committed.
Why Do Companies Care About Employee Perceptions?
- At the end of the day, it is about aiming for employee loyalty. Bain & Company Market Tools & Tends 2015 report validates this reality, employee engagement surveys have gained popularity from being the third most used tool in 2012 to the second position globally in 2015 with 44% usage.
Employee loyalty is the ultimate outcome employers are reaching for, as when that is achieved people show higher engagement and thus their productivity and creativity improves.
Contributing factors : According to Workforce’s study, employees ranked relationships with their line managers at 80% importance.
The old saying “people leave their bosses not the company when they resign” applies here. Employee loyalty can either be improved or destroyed depending on the leadership style or culture. Engagement surveys provide great insight regarding leadership challenges.
Effective employee engagement is about creating an organization that:
- Has staff who are attached to the company and are willing to go the extra mile,
- Promotes a great level of individual, personal and interpersonal emotional wellbeing at work
- Built a local work environment that supports productivity and performance
Get Leadership To Drive Engagement to continuously improve employee engagement results by creating an employee engagement roadmap, enabling them implement employee engagement activities in a systematic fashion.
These are guidelines for creating an employee engagement roadmap:
- Build the business case – clearly explain why employee engagement is important, ensure that all your leadership is on-board about the benefits, line managers have a significant role in influencing employee experience therefore they need to be trained on this topic.
Measure Engagement – it is essential to do this in order to gauge the level of employee satisfaction levels, surveys comparing different dimensions that impact effective employee engagement are measured by department, job level, even compared to industry benchmarks and trends, etc.
Analyse Results – equally assess performance of departments as well as the overall organisational employee engagement results. The result will shed light as well as provide insights about the strengths and weaknesses of the leadership from the outlook of employees perspective.
Communicate Results – everyone in the business has a role in improving employee engagement. The leadership has to ensure that their teams are aware of the results.
Develop Engagement Model and Action Plans – every leader must understand what to do about the employee engagement results of their teams, having a model guides leadership in developing action plans for employee engagement, provides a structured approach, as well standardizes employee experience across the organisation.
Implement and Monitor Impact – setting an employee engagement scorecard is crucial so as to monitor implementation. I encourage line managers to set goals and targets in order to keep them focused and prioritizing employee engagement since they may lose focus when faced with operational pressures.