In November the government backed independent Employee Engagement task force launched a new movement ‘Engage for Success’, its mission is to be an inspirational force to drive measurable improvement in employee performance, creativity and innovation. Engage for Success firmly believes that the next generation of successful businesses will be those that free the potential of people within them. Their hope is that employee engagement can release more of the capability and potential of people at work enabling personal growth, organisational growth and ultimately growth for Britain.
So what is employee engagement?
Employee engagement is a workplace approach designed to ensure that employees are committed to their organisation’s goals and values, motivated to contribute to organisational success, and are able, at the same time, to enhance their own sense of wellbeing.
Is this all management gobbledegook or can employee engagement be useful to
The research speaks for itself; many businesses have undertaken employee engagement research and those that score highly also have higher rates of profitability, lower staff turnover and associated costs of recruitment, and higher customer loyalty than businesses with average employee engagement ratings. It’s simple really if an employee is happy, enjoys their work, and feels valued they are keen to excel in their role and help the business succeed. What does become difficult for managers is identifying who’s engaged and who’s not. Typically this is much easier for an MD of a small workforce to answer than an MD of a multinational operation but everyone can be blinkered to what’s going on in their own organisation, which is why independent research can really help pinpoint areas for development.
Some businesses may think it’s particularly hard to spend time looking at employee engagement during a recession. However during times of cut-backs staff tend to take on more tasks, responsibilities and work longer hours sometimes without a pay increase or promotion. Staff morale is also hit when redundancies are announced in a workplace therefore it’s often even more
important to target employee engagement at this time to ensure your business stays fighting fit.
We all want happy employees so why not undertake a little research for yourself? Walk into the office on Monday morning and ask yourself ‘Do my employees look happy?’, ‘Are they going the extra mile?’ And, also ask yourself ‘What can I do to improve employee engagement in my workforce?’
TOP TIPS TO ASSESSING EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT:
- Do your teams regularly exceed targets? Are they highly innovative? Do they provide excellent levels of customer service? If so this could indicate high levels of employee engagement.
- Do you have a high staff turnover? If you see a jump or steady increase in your staff turnover this could be a sign that you have an employee engagement issue.
- Undertake an employee engagement survey this will help benchmark where you are at the moment and you can compare your organisation against these results in 6-12 months’ time.
- Allow your Line Managers to spend time working with their teams both as a group and individually. Ensure they are communicating clearly, supporting their team members and having regular one to ones.
- Can you identify those Line Managers who’s team are performing well? Look at their behaviour, the way in which they interact with their team. Could you then organise for other Line Managers to shadow them or alternatively allow high performing Line Managers to be seconded into