July 08, 2021 by Andrea Rajic
Simon Sinek said: “All organizations start with WHY, but only the great ones keep their WHY clear year after year.” And why is keeping your “why” clear at all times important?
When you know why you’re doing something, you’ll feel more motivated to do it and even ready to put in some extra effort to make it happen.
Employee engagement isn’t just about completing all their tasks timely and successfully - it’s much more than that. It’s sharing the company’s values and being emotionally involved in the work. Such engagement has a significant impact on the worker’s productivity, which was clear over a decade ago. In 2013, research showed that engaged employees have a 22% higher productivity score.
Today, engagement matters even more. And if you’re not sure how to boost your team’s engagement to help them become more productive and maximize their efforts, this article will help you do just that.
The shift to remote and hybrid work models has prompted us to talk about topics that may not have been very popular before. However, now they seem to be one of the priorities of many businesses that want to build reliable teams and decrease employee turnover.
Employee mental health and wellbeing strategies are hot topics, but so is employee engagement.
Employee engagement refers to the emotional commitment a worker feels towards their company and the company’s goals. It means their goals aren’t only materialistic (like their paycheck) or self-centered (climbing up the career ladder or getting a raise), but they truly care about what they do and believe in the company’s vision and the importance of their product or service.
An engaged worker can be happy and satisfied, but it’s vital to emphasize that a happy or satisfied employee isn’t automatically an engaged one.
An employee can be happy at their workplace without working hard or going out of their way to make sure they reach their goals and help the company reach theirs. An employee can be satisfied with their paycheck, but never take that little extra step to show they know their “why” and they’re committed to it.
Here are a few important statistics that you should know about employee engagement.
Sometimes, simple numbers say more than complicated explanations. From this, It’s clear that engaged employees are a win-win situation. Employers may experience greater profit and less turnover, while employees feel motivated and appreciated in the workplace. However, it’s also clear that companies worldwide could use additional training on this topic to make the most out of it.
Let’s talk a bit more in-depth about why employee engagement matters. What benefits can you hope to experience if you focus on boosting engagement in your company?
Productivity is important, but it’s only a small part of what engagement at the workplace means. A productive employee isn’t always engaged, but if your workers feel engaged while working, they will also be productive.
Productivity without engagement is usually a short-term success since feeling invested in your company’s why and sharing the same values can keep you going even when you’re not feeling particularly motivated. If an employee isn’t committed to their work, their productivity may drop as soon as they encounter an obstacle.
Engaged team members create an overall positive atmosphere at the workplace, which contributes to employee happiness. For most people, it’s not enough to have a satisfactory paycheck and flexible working hours to be happy with their job - they may feel like something is missing to feel happy at work.
That something is usually the feeling of being engaged - emotionally committed to reaching the company’s goals and spreading its vision. It may be particularly challenging to keep your remote team happy, but it’s not impossible if you keep them engaged.
Did you know that workplace friendships are an important factor that people consider when deciding if they’re going to leave a job? It’s actually nothing to be surprised about since most of us spend one-third of our day at work - it’s only logical that we’ve made friends among people we share the office space with.
But engagement has a positive impact on these relationships, too. Engaged people build better interpersonal relationships and communicate more effectively, according to statistics, which contributes to their overall happiness and productivity.
Feeling engaged in what your company stands for may help you feel psychological safety at work, too. Many people can’t reach their full potential because they’re constantly feeling uncertain about their job, and have the paralyzing fear of making a mistake.
A company that engages its employees may help them overcome this fear by reminding them of the purpose everyone in the company shares. Consequently, the employees will provide outstanding performance and feel more satisfied at work.
We can’t say profitability or great salary is irrelevant. Money is a significant part of external motivation when it comes to work, although it usually doesn’t make up for some other factors that employees may perceive as negative, such as inflexible working hours or incompetent leadership.
From the employer’s point of view, increased profitability comes from employees’ dedication to work-related tasks which is greater when they feel engaged. According to a SmartCEO survey, poor leadership costs a company around 7% of its annual sales. So, the question is - can you really afford to keep your employees disengaged?
Losing a sense of purpose may contribute greatly to a person’s decision to leave a company. When someone keeps working on the same old daunting tasks every day, without really knowing why they’re doing it and how it helps the company or the community, they may feel like they need new challenges.
By keeping your employees engaged, you may decrease your turnover rate. That will allow you to build strong and reliable teams and keep retention high.
It’s easy when everything is going according to plan. But what happens when a business faces a bad period or a global crisis such as a pandemic?
Engaged employees may show greater initiative and innovation in the face of a crisis. Those who feel disengaged at the workplace will probably look after their own interests since they feel no connection to the company’s purpose or goals. Creating a team of engaged employees you can rely on may help you overcome crises and build a stronger business.
If you’ve realized by now you should do something to increase employee engagement in your company, here are a few tips to help you do just that.
Improve employee communication. The first step of ensuring employee engagement is to help them understand that their opinion and feedback are appreciated. Encourage them to express their concerns and wishes, and share ideas and suggestions without the fear of being misinterpreted or laughed at.
Conduct surveys more often. Some employees may feel shy and avoid expressing their thoughts publicly. You should give them a chance to be heard as well. Conducting employee surveys can be anonymous, and effective. But make sure you have enough people on the task since it may be too late to fix a potential issue by the time all responses are collected.
Introduce HR chatbots. These could communicate with the employees in real-time and solve problems more quickly. At least, they could note suggestions and complaints more efficiently so you can react timely. Involve your employees in business plans. Everyone should know what’s going on in the company and what your next plans are. Your workers may come up with some great ideas even if they’re not in management positions. Even if they don’t participate in this way, they’ll feel appreciated and as an important part of their teams and the whole company.
Hold non-business meetings where you’ll discuss company culture and values. Some employees will need a reminder from time to time - why are they here? Why are you all doing what you’re doing? By building an admirable company culture and conveying a sense of purpose, you will help your workers do their job better.
Praise effort and don’t limit it to your top performers. Results are important, but if you notice someone has put a lot of effort into a task, praise it as well. Make effort and performance recognition a habit and you’ll see a significant increase in your employees’ motivation at work.
Have an employee wellbeing strategy in place. You want your employees to care about your company and its goals? You have to start first, by creating an employee wellness strategy to help your team maintain their physical and mental health. By showing them that you care about them and don’t consider them easily-replaced resources, you’ll drive the same response from them.
Be a good role model. If you want your employees to be in touch with their purpose within the company and stay committed to your shared goals, you have to model that kind of behavior. A good leader lives by their words and if they want to see a change in their team, they need to be the one to drive it.
Is there anyone who doesn’t benefit from a good employee engagement strategy? The answer is clear: no. With engaged employees, you get a highly motivated team driven by the same purpose and values, ready to make that extra effort to reach and even exceed their own and the company’s goals.
It all starts with appreciation and treating people like valuable resources whose expertise, commitment, and effort affect your company’s profit, reputation, and the results you achieve altogether.
Ready to boost your employee engagement? Providing your workers with flexible workspaces may be an ideal place to start. Reach out to Gable and let us know what your team needs. We’ll take it from there and work our magic to find a perfect spot for your employees to work theirs.