By Joe Corona
Elevating Employee Engagement may not guarantee survival in these fiercely changing and challenging times but there is increasing evidence to indicate that organizations that invest in engagement are better positioned to elevate and sustain high levels of performance. How do they do that? By creating a workplace environment that fosters enthusiasm, loyalty, and inspiration to expend discretionary effort on the organizations they work for.
Research points to five reasons why organizations should consider Employee Engagement as their most significant strategic priority:
- Lower Turnover – Engaged employees are 87% less likely to quit their jobs (The Corporate Leadership Council);
- Lost Productivity – Engaged employees on average take 2.7 sick days per year while disengaged employees take almost three times more (Gallup);
- Inspire Innovation and Creativity – 59% of engaged employees say, “work brings out their most creative ideas,” versus 3% of disengaged employees (Gallup);
- Improved Market Value – Public companies in the top quartile of employee engagement had earnings per share growth 2.6 times higher than those below average (Gallup);
- Improved Economic Performance – Engaged employees generate 43% more revenue (Hay Group).
So how do organizations create a culture of elevated employee engagement? Here are five solutions that have proven to drive improved engagement levels:
- Survey your employee attitudes – Surveys can be extremely useful in identifying the true feelings of your workforce and surface opportunities to improvement organization fundamentals. The fact that leadership genuinely cared enough to ask for feedback will positively drive engagement levels!
- Communication holds organizations together – Inform your workforce of what’s going on within the business and genuinely give them a voice. Allow them to contribute their ideas and action where possible to show they are a valued member of the team. As front line employees, their ideas can often be better than their leaders, really!!
- Ensure your organization has a sound Leadership structure in place – Creating a fair and unbiased work environment that encourages participation requires leaders that genuinely value the contributions of their employees. Universal access to leadership creates an “open communication” environment that surfaces creativity, ideas, and more importantly, it surfaces issues and problems sooner than later.
- Demonstrate your commitment – Show your commitment to your staff by providing opportunities for training and career development. Invest in them and you will not only reap the benefits of an inspired and loyal employee, but also a more skilled and knowledgeable workforce; a true win-win situation!
- Equitable performance standards – There is nothing that drags down employee engagement like inequitable performance standards. Setting clear performance expectations and dealing with underperformers swiftly sends the message that performance matters. By ignoring underperformers, your true performers may decrease the effort they are willing to put forth since poor performance has no consequence.
The bottom line – Employees are inspired to invest in organizations that invest in them. If they believe they can contribute to the success of the organization and the organization is willing to help them achieve their ambitions – they are in!
Rise above your competition and invest in creating a culture of highly engaged and high performing employees!