According to Forbes, “Employee engagement is the level of commitment, passion, and loyalty a worker has toward their work and company. The more engaged an employee is, the more work they’ll put forth. Only 32% of employees in the United States are engaged, according to a Gallup poll. That means over two-thirds of employees nationwide are disengaged with their work.”
Employees may be unengaged at work for any number of reasons. For instance, an employee may feel as though they are anonymous to the company and that managers and other company leaders don’t know or don’t care about employee performance. Maybe they feel irrelevant, as if they don’t make a difference in the company or the world, or maybe they have no way to gauge their progress and level of contribution for themselves. They cannot be fulfilled in their work, if their success depends on the opinions or whims of another person.
Whatever may be the case, there are quite a few ways that you can boost employee engagement in your company, and give your company and the people in it the means to reach their full professional potential. Keep reading to learn the key points for unlocking employee engagement.
1. Establish Individual Communication With Your Employees
One of the biggest challenges to overcome is that it is not unusual for employees to feel as though they are nameless or faceless cogs in a machine. It is important to take an interest in each employee on a personal level. This will give you the ability to measure what kind of approach you should take with each employee, specific to their set of skills or even their particular set of circumstances
If you know your employees, you can better judge how to guide each employee. Sometimes employees can be “thin skinned” when it comes to criticism, so it’s important to use a soft hand and a guiding approach with these employees; whereas some employees would rather be told in a more clinical and straightforward way.
By taking a personal interest in the lives and aspirations of your employee, you can let them know that they are not just an asset, rather that they are an individual, unique, and essential part of operations.
By establishing a line of open communication with each employee, they can feel like they are an active part of the company’s overall success, and this also encourages them to take pride and initiative in their work, and set a good example for their fellow employees.
2. Give Employees the Tools They Need and the Know How to Use Them
One big mistake that employers can make, is to take for granted an employees aptitude to teach themselves to use new tools and equipment. This is especially important if your employees work with software and apps as part of their everyday work. If an employee doesn’t know how to properly use the functions and features of the programs they need, it will limit their output. This can be very frustrating as well, and if they do not understand how to use the tools they are given, they may feel as though they’ve been “thrown into the fire”.
It is important not only to give them the proper tools to complete their tasks, but it is also important to give each employee individual training in how to fully utilize the resources that they have been given. This can be achieved by ongoing employee training to keep all employees up to date on any updates or new features.
Employees who have been given proper training, and know how to perform all functions of their respective positions generally tend to perform better than those who have been left to their own devices to learn how to use tools and resources. this is usually apparent in the quality of each employee’s output.
3. Acknowledge Employee Growth and Development
It’s an often overlooked fact that rewards and recognition can increase employee engagement. As such, employers should clearly broadcast the meaning of the company’s work and where each employee has excelled in their work. That message gives people a clearer idea of how they fit into the mission of the company and what kinds of behavior will be rewarded.
Too often, though, gifts and bonuses are doled out with little fanfare. Each employee should be publicly commended in front of their peers for a job well done. You can even make an event of rewarding employees for a job well done.
For example, each quarter, you can take the time out of one day during the week to commend each department as a whole and thank them for their hard work. One good idea is to buy lunch or refreshments for your employees, and take time to commend each one with certificates or plaques for exemplary work, and for their impact on the company.
Employees are happier at work when they receive constructive criticism, and praise for a job well done. Happy employees are engaged employees. And without engaged employees, no company or organization can grow to reach its full potential.
Using these tips, you can ensure that your employees have the proper skills, knowledge, and motivation to excel at their jobs, thus allowing your employees to feel that they are essential to the overall success of the company.
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