How to Boost Employee Engagement
Employee engagement is really important. An engaged workforce will produce a higher quality of service to your customers which leads to higher standards of delivery (and ultimately higher profits).
In fact, studies have found that increasing engagement by 10% can increase profits by almost £1,700 per employee, every year. So, what is it, what does it look like, and how can you boost it amongst your workforce?
What is employee engagement?
Despite what you may have heard, employee engagement isn’t about employee happiness or satisfaction. Instead, engagement is an emotional commitment your team has to your organisation and its goals. Basically, it means that the right combination of factors is in place to motivate your team to work to achieve success for your company - not just for a pay cheque or a promotion!
What does employee engagement look like?
You won't see engagement by surveying who’s making the most of the ping pong table or the occasional duvet day. Those things are perks, but don’t represent an engaged workforce. Instead, you’ll spot employee engagement when people are going above and beyond of their own accord: for example, helping out other colleagues without being told to do so. It might mean coming in early every day to hit the ground running, or staying late to perfect a piece of work with no immediate expectation of remuneration. It’s about doing something for the greater good of the organisation – even when the boss isn’t watching.
What factors help to boost engagement?
Before you start trying to boost engagement, it’s important to remember that no two people are motivated by the same thing. What drives emotional commitment to a job or organisation is dependant on an individual’s values, but there are a few things that you can do to help. According to experts David MacLeod and Nita Clarke, you should make sure your business:
- Has strong leaders with a strong strategic narrative (which means appointing people to inform your workforce about their organisation, where it has come from and where it’s heading).
- Provides engaged managers (the kind of managers who treat their team members as individuals, and coach them to their full potential).
- Gives your employees a voice (so that they can contribute their ideas and make a difference. Your workforce mustn’t feel that they’re a problem, but rather that they’re integral to the solution that makes your company succeed).
- Demonstrates integrity (which means that the values on the wall or in your presentations are reflected in day to day behaviours. Promises are made and kept, and transparent explanations are given if not).
You can also improve engagement by having the right kind of infrastructure and tools in place. Communication is vital in order to ensure that people are engaged at work, and software products such as http://upraise.io/ offer the right kind of tools to ensure that team members keep talking to one another. Something as seemingly simple as software can ensure that values and goals are shared, clear and achievable – so, be sure to combine big aims with smaller details in order to boost employee engagement!