Employee engagement is more than just employee satisfaction.
It's about passion, effectiveness, commitment and results.
When President John F. Kennedy toured NASA, he saw a janitor carrying a broom. He interrupted his tour, walked over and introduced himself, and asked, "What are you doing?" The janitor replied, "Well, Mr. President, I'm helping put a man on the moon." That's employee engagement.
You work hard to hire great employees with talent to help the organization achieve its goals. Like most new adventures, it's an exciting time for both you during the onboarding process. New team members are anxious to succeed and contribute. Managers want to get them up to speed quickly and comfortably integrated into the team. Coworkers are interested in developing a relationship with the new hires for friendship, collaboration and support.
Employee engagement is an ongoing process. It's a consistent effort to inspire and connect with your team in meaningful ways at every level in order to achieve organizational goals.
of US workers are not engaged or actively disengaged
actively disengaged workers cost US businesses 34% of their annual salary
According to the latest findings from Gallup, Inc., actively disengaged employees cost organizations 34% of their annual salary. Use this calculator to determine the cost to your business.
What is employee disengagement costing you?
What is employee engagement and why does it matter?
Watch Dave's explanation in this 3-minute video and learn what employee engagement is and why it matters to your business. Then calculate the annual cost of disengagement to your organization.
Do you recognize any of these engagement behaviors?
Actively Engaged Employees: they are passionate, love their jobs, and try to make things better everyday
Not Engaged Employees: they are checked out, sleepwalking through the day, and put in hours vs. energy
Actively Disengaged Employees: they are miserable people who sabotage projects and undermine coworkers.
Engagement begins when you connect an individual's passion with your mission.
Sometimes organizations and leaders focus all of their energy on training for the job and don't train to the mission. Connecting the staff to the organization's mission and purpose and communicating how their role and contributions impact the larger goals of the organization is an important aspect of employee engagement.
When an individual's passion is aligned with a clear connection to your mission, a real understanding of their contribution, and the opportunity to grow, you have the winning recipe for a star performer.
Engagement increases when you answer the question, "Why is my job important?"
Because we're all people and it's easy to lose sight of the big picture, individuals and teams need to be continually reminded of why their job and contributions matter. When people understand how their job is connected to the mission and goals of the organization, they are more motivated, committed to results and demonstrate loyalty to the organization.
Their understanding of how and why their job is important is what creates passion and purpose for them professionally and personally.
Engagement improves when you answer the question, "How am I doing?"
People need encouragement to do their best work and have someone take a personal interest in their progress and development. Employees who feel they have opportunities for growth and feel they are appreciated and valued show a stronger commitment to their job and their employer.
Organizations and managers that are willing to invest time in providing timely, measurable, consistent feedback to employees see the ROI in months, not years. Recognizing and motivating talent ensures that the next generation of leaders is always under development.
Engagement is present when employees ask, "What more can I do to help?"
A truly engaged contributor is anxious to be a great ambassador for the organization and an active problem-solver. They want the organization to succeed and are committed to results. You can count on them to invest themselves on projects or problems outside their role. These ambassadors are the champions of the organization and worth their weight in gold.
How do you know if your team is really engaged?
Ask them! How often do you ask your employees for actionable, meaningful feedback? One-on-one sessions, team meetings and anonymous employee feedback surveys are all effective tools that you can use to expose the gaps and opportunities to help your team and your business thrive.
Employee Engagement Surveys - Best Practices
Survey questions should be actionable. If you intend to ask questions about current engagement programs, separate satisfaction and importance independently and balance the results against one another.
Survey everyone in your organization. Do not collect role or department questions unless there are at least 15 people in each department or function to ensure anonymity.
Survey electronically, preferably through a 3rd party administrator. You will receive more honest feedback when employees know a neutral party is collecting the information.
Survey consistently, at least once per year or more often. The more often you survey, the more often you can measure progress. Consistent surveying yields better results.
5 Steps to Improve Employee Engagement
Do you want to begin the process to improve employee engagement?
Define what success looks like when employees are engaged.
Ask for actionable, meaningful feedback from employees
Report on the findings of the feedback to everyone at all levels of the organization.
Begin the action planning process and include employees to improve engagement.
Implement the plans, communicating intentionally along the way.
Repeat these steps annually, at minimum, to measure progress and continue working on improvements to achieve success.