Employee engagement is a big factor in how your employees will perform. The more engaged they are, the more they feel a sense of commitment to their team and to the company. Engaged employees are motivated to do their best, rather than just putting in the minimal effort needed for a paycheck. If you want to improve your results, boosting employee engagement can help. Here are some pointers on the importance of employee engagement.
What is employee engagement?
Engagement is not the same as satisfaction. A satisfaction survey will tell you how happy your employees are. For some people, what makes them happy could be an easy job where they just coast along. They may be happy in a job where nobody really cares whether they spend the day on Facebook. This is different from engagement, where employees are involved, challenged, and motivated to do more.
There are two primary facets of employee engagement. First, how engaged are employees with their manager and their team? Do they feel that their direct supervisor values their contribution, trusts them, and provides the direction and support they need? The second aspect is how engaged they are with the overall organization. Do they feel that senior management treats people fairly and with respect? Do they believe in the company’s values and goals?
Some attempts to boost motivation are meant to fail
Why would you think that some attempts to increase employee motivation are meant to fail? For starters, if your people are not feeling engaged they can't feel motivated. You as the boss must give them a good reason to do their job right. Keep them hooked on a story, give them more challenging tasks, and find a way to convince them that working for you has great benefits. Don't rely on paying your employees a huge salary to stay. Happiness at the workplace has nothing to do with job satisfaction and engagement.
How does employee engagement affect your company?
When employees are engaged with their manager and their company, they care about seeing you succeed. They care about making a contribution, and they are emotionally invested in the success of their projects, their team, and their company. It is not surprising that this would lead to better organizational performance.
Studies have shown that employee engagement can directly affect business results such as customer satisfaction and growth of revenues. One study by the Hay Group showed that high employee engagement led to revenue growth of up to 250 percent. Another study from Towers Perrin found that companies with high employee engagement showed improvement in operating income of up to 19 percent.
How can you improve employee engagement?
- Motivation is about more than money
Many companies base their programs on the idea that people are motivated by money and promotions. While everyone likes to get a bonus, there is more to motivation than this. High performers are also motivated by purpose, autonomy and mastery. They want to contribute to a larger purpose, and they want autonomy in how they manage their own time and work. Mastery is when they feel they are building their expertise in their field. When you work on improving employee engagement, keep these additional motivations in mind.
- Create goals and objectives accordingly
When you set up your goals, projects and objectives, remember those additional motivators, and see how you can incorporate them. Also, always make sure that individual goals are aligned with team and company goals.
- Remove the road blocks
Nothing can make a person feel that their efforts are not valued, as quickly as being blocked by departmental politics or red tape. If they view their job as a series of unreasonable road blocks, it works against your engagement efforts. Remove the problems and smooth the way for them, and they will be more engaged and achieve much more.
Without engagement you'll never manage to motivate your employees and convince them that working for your company can bring them a lot of benefits. If you don't want to fail your best solution is to pay attention to their needs. Employee’s surveys for example, are excellent tools you can use to analyze what's working and what's not among employees. It's all about communication – as long as you have that people won't be afraid to speak up.
This guest post is from William Taylor.