According to a study report, job satisfaction is no longer about the pay alone, and remuneration is no longer the key driver for people switching jobs. Thousands of employees admit to being unhappy in their current jobs, even though their salary levels are satisfactory. Dissatisfaction has been heightened since the start of the pandemic, when many employees worked remotely. Some became distanced from belonging to their workplace and contemplated new employment options. Employee engagement is the X-factor that can retain employees, keep them motivated and reduce turnover.
Mastering the art and science of employee engagement is no easy feat, especially when each workplace is different. When employees feel emotionally connected to their jobs, teams and the organisation, they work harder willingly, stay longer and put forward their best. Employee engagement impacts every aspect of business management, including revenues, customer experience, productivity, and employee turnover.
Impact of poor employee engagement
Disengaged employees not only demonstrate their dissatisfaction in multiple ways, but may also undermine the productivity of engaged employees. Poor employee engagement can siphon organisational resources and time and undo the work of the other teams. Addressing issues that drive disengagement is a pivotal part of an organisation’s risk management strategy.
Highly engaged employees are not only satisfied but also help the organisation achieve its goals. Lack of work engagement costs the economy millions of dollars each year in lost productivity and human resources. Poor engagement can arise from a number of underlying problems such as poor office culture, lack of clarity of roles and responsibilities, and workplace dysfunction. Disengagement disrupts workplace harmony and demolishes employee morale. As a result, the organisation stagnates as innovation and creativity are sapped.
A company that does not maximise employee engagement is likely to witness some or all of the following:
- Low customer satisfaction
- High absenteeism from work
- Lack of drive and initiative
- Poor employee health and wellbeing
- Low employee retention.
Successful and high-performing office cultures are built with engaged workforces who feel safe and secure in their roles and value their individual contributions while revelling in the shared accomplishments of others.
Five things wise managers do to engage their teams
Wise leaders use the following five versatile tools to improve engagement, accountability and drive:
The unconditional recognition of an employee’s intrinsic human value is known as validation. Validation is crucial regardless of performance or ability and involves genuine listening skills, responding in a courteous manner, and caring about employee wellbeing. Under effective leadership, the desire for validation can become a motivating driver for engagement, performance, and growth.
Great team leaders make a point of offering praise and recognition to employees based on performance, attitude, and behaviour. Employees in turn are able to see that the organisation values their work and appreciates their efforts. Employee recognition should be regular, consistent and trustworthy. Affirmation and rewards motivate employees and drive engagement.
Managers who provide regular and constructive feedback on desired outcomes rather than past mistakes are more likely to find their teams receptive and motivated to improve. The best employee feedback involves emphasising employee strengths, establishing clear expectations, and offering a path to personal growth and success.
Prioritising diversity and inclusion
Creating a workplace culture that welcomes and nurtures people from diverse backgrounds sends out a strong, supportive message to other employees. It indicates that the company has an inclusive culture and respects people with different backgrounds, ethnicities, and personal preferences/beliefs. Creating an inclusive culture provides leaders with a deeper understanding of their employees’ values.
Promoting transparency across the organisation
Having confidence in senior management plays a crucial role in reinforcing engagement. Employees like having managers they can trust to take the organisation forward, and they want to know that their efforts count. Leaders should consider including employees in conversations about strategic development, rationales for decisions, and setbacks to overcome. It is good to share regular updates with your employees about positives, negatives and everything in between, and give every employee a seat at the table.
In addition, leaders can adopt these strategies to increase employee engagement:
- Encourage employees to be themselves to help them embrace an entrepreneurial attitude.
- Develop and leverage employees’ capabilities rather than focusing on negatives.
- Avoid micromanaging and instead empower employees to discover their full potential.
- Share their success with their team to help them build momentum.
Our reliable team at ESN conducts management coaching and offers a variety of training programs and interventions that can help you boost engagement and reduce employee turnover. Please feel free to contact us for additional information regarding our comprehensive range of corporate consultancy services.