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How to Increase Employee Engagement

7/5/18 12:20 PM

Today the biggest concern for most companies is “Are my employees engaged?” Employee Engagement is a main topic of concern for most organizations because the state of your employee engagement affects all aspects of your company. Only about 34% of U.S. workers, and 13% worldwide report that they are engaged at work, according to  Gallup data.  These statistics don’t just mean that you’ll see a shortage of smiles in the office. Engagement affects many aspects of your company, including productivity, customer service, and profitability.

Humans are emotional creatures, and most managers believe that their teams are purely rational when it comes to making decisions that impact their careers. However, studies show that 70% of our decisions are on emotional factors and only 30% on rational factors. Nevertheless, being in tune with your employees' emotions can be a great way to improve engagement. The steps to improving engagement can be easy if implemented correctly.

Here are just a few ways that you can help increase employee engagement:

Provide the Right tools to your employees

One main driver for employee engagement is your employees feeling like they have all the right tools to succeed in their jobs. Although tools seem like an element within most companies that should be the most simple to provide, it often gets overlooked. A company’s infrastructure includes the tools and processes people use to complete their work and the organizational capabilities they have at their disposal, explains Don MacPherson, a partner in the employee engagement practice at Aon in Minneapolis. “Particularly in large organizations, there are barriers to employees getting things done,” he says. “It has an effect on employee engagement.”

Give Individual Attention

Today’s workforce yearns for one on one time with the leadership in their company. Simply performing mid-year and end-of-the-year reviews is not enough for the modern employee, they want weekly and even daily feedback on the projects they are working on. Not only does the modern employee yearn for feedback, but they also want recognition for a job well done.

Download: How Employee Engagement Efforts Are Failing

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Task Meaningful Work

Disengaged employees yearn for work that they view as meaningful. With 73% of the American workforce identifying as disengaged in their work, one way to improve on this number is to make sure that you are giving your employees work to care about. One mistake that many managers make is hiring someone based on their merits to get them in the door of their business, but they have not yet established a clear career path for them. If you don’t provide meaningful work for your employees quickly, then you may lose an employee who had the potential to be a great engaged employee.

Make Engagement a Constant Topic

Managers who see optimum success discuss Employee Engagement frequently. They will typically conduct “state of engagement” meetings and engage everyone in the discussion to make sure that all voices are heard. Each week, the CEO of Southwest Airlines gives a “shout out,” publicly praising employees who have gone above and beyond at work. There’s also a monthly recognition in Southwest’s magazine, featuring an employee who shined that month. “They[other companies]can buy all the physical things. The things you can’t buy are dedication, devotion, loyalty -- the feeling that you are participating in a crusade,” -- Herb Kelleher, Southwest Airlines Founder.

Making sure that your employees are engaged doesn’t have to be an expensive task, just take the simple steps above to make sure that your employees feel that they matter. By doing so you will be sure to reap an office full of “engaged” employees.

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