As employees’ emotional commitment towards their organization and goals, employee engagement is arguably the most significant indicator of satisfaction in the workplace today.
After all, in 2022, employees are looking for more than simply a 9-to-5 job. If their employer isn’t offering more through employee engagement, be prepared to have a revolving door of departing and less-than-satisfied colleagues.
Make Improving Employee Engagement a Priority
Employee engagement can be a make-or-break factor in everything from employee satisfaction, workplace culture, and a desirable place to play a part in peoples’ career journeys. It’s the measurement of how happy and passionate team members are towards their work, so when employees feel committed and excited about their jobs, their engagements are high, which results in improved performance and productivity.
Let’s dive into our top-12 useful and practical tips for employees and leaders to use towards improving employee engagement within any organization..
🔎You can also check out our recently published Employee Engagement: Definition, Current State, and Best Practices.
1. Important work is a key to motivation
As human beings in our day-to-day personal life situations, we’re more motivated and more inspired when something important needs to get done. From painting the new closet door to feeding the baby to visiting an elderly relative under the weather. These same motivational and inspirational factors are also vital for employees’ day-to-day tasks.
Whether small workplace tasks or larger organizational projects, employees suddenly become more motivated and engaged when presented as being vital to a company’s success. So, ensure the leaders in your workplace involve employees with assignments that clearly fit into the organization’s goals and strategies to help keep employee engagement on the rise.
2. Nurture and encourage diversity in personalities
Consider the right mix of the teams you’re involved in building. While the topic of the diversity of your employees obviously includes nationality, race, gender, and sexual orientation, diversity goes even deeper.
Seek ways to diversify not only the backgrounds of the people you’re bringing into the team but also ensure they offer a range of different personalities. Doing so helps nurture a team’s innovation and even increases the likelihood of having a collective impact on success.
3. Communicate the organization’s goals and strategies
Arguably the most critical aspect of employee engagement is communication. And improving employee engagement starts with healthy communication. No different than in any other part of our lives, communication is the engine of what keeps an organization going.
Although not the case for all, larger companies and enterprises have a reputation for communication challenges, typically due to the enormity of these organizations combined with antiquated and outdated processes. Regardless of the size of your organization, be aware and keep the lines of communication open.
4. Ensure modern-day adaptability
Employee motivation increases when line managers can relate to their team members. Now more than ever in 2022 and beyond, it’s essential that leaders are being flexible to adjust everything from processes and ways of working to the openness of working from home and hybrid working solutions to day-to-day technology tools.
Yesterday is yesterday for a reason. It’s history. So, in improving employee engagement, leaders and managers must acclimate to today and learn from the yesterday rather than still being in the yesterday.
5. Make sure leaders are connecting in a human way with their teams
When not mindful or aware, it’s easy for there to be a disconnect between senior-level management and the rest of the workforce at any business. When this happens, staff begins to disengage as there’s a feeling of disinterest and unappreciation from upper management in day-to-day work.
Again, we’re putting the onus on leaders here as it’s up to them to develop and nurture human connections between themselves and the team members below them that are fulfilling their organizations’ goals and strategies. So, in this element of improving employee engagement, encourage leaders to connect closer with their teams. After all, who doesn’t like the boss who’s just like one of them?
6. Leverage and challenge employees to their strengths
Have you asked your employees lately if they’re being challenged enough? What would they answer? Employees get hired in their roles because of their value and strengths in their designated areas. Leaders must ensure they’re harnessing the strengths of each individual member within their teams. This includes having an eye to identify employees’ strengths, weaknesses and comfort levels around social situations between one another and other teams.
Keep these strengths (and weaknesses) in mind and put your employees into motivational situations to help succeed in improving employee engagement while avoiding employee disengagement
7. Keep the engagement train rolling
Taking steps in improving employee engagement should never be thought of as an annual occurrence or one-time event for team leaders to merely check off their to-do lists. Rather, employee engagement habits need to be a continuous development process to work effectively.
So, leaders should be finding enough time to have a quick discussion with each team member regularly. It could be as simple as asking how that big project is coming along to show interest and an opportunity for team members to share quick wins or to raise red flags and concerns.
8. Request (and offer) feedback
Encourage communication among your teams, especially between team members and their line managers. These communication opportunities allow employees to share their feedback with their leaders, helping them better understand what helps them be at their best.
In improving employee engagement, leaders should be having regular one-to-ones to both ask for feedback and offer feedback. Not to replace one-to-ones, but leaders may also want to create a quarterly or bi-annual anonymous survey for their team members, where employees may find easier to share feedback.
Leaders should play the most important role in building this strategy and support its execution.
9. Say goodbye to the micromanagement culture
Are employees within your company encouraged to not only speak up and offer new ideas, but also provided with opportunities to test and trial those new ideas? If yes, you’re already helping in facilitating and improving employee engagement. If not, consider removing the micromanagement reigns.
Trust and empower your employees and give employee engagement a significant boost. And don’t be surprised when that next new innovative solution or way of working exposes itself to the delight of all.
10. Allow for failure, then empathize
Failures are a part of life, and there will be times when employees stumble. When this happens, look for ways to educate so that everyone can learn from these trip-ups and avoid repeating them.
This is a natural tie-in to the previous tip, where we talked about allowing employees to trial new ideas without being overly concerned with something not working out as intended. These trials and errors facilitate empathy, innovation and help in improving employee engagement.
11. Take a temperature check at year one and year two
There’s nothing like a shiny new toy. For any professional, the same is true for a new employer. That’s why employee engagement is typically already at its peak on the very first day on the job. But, like anything else, that “newness” factor starts to deteriorate quite quickly. By the time a new employee hits year No. 2 at the company, employee engagement tends to take a significant turn downward in most workplaces.
That doesn’t need to be the case, though. Sustaining and improving employee engagement practices are what we’re after here, so be sure leaders schedule a chat at both the one-year and two-year employee anniversaries to have honest discussions about employees’ thoughts and feedback. This one goes a bit deeper than the regular one-to-ones they should already be having. Consider it a deeper check-in to get an overall view of employees’ feelings and how to alleviate any concerns they might have.
💡Check out the video below where professionals debate the realities behind talent turnover👇
12. Arm leaders with people-management skills
While some leaders may be extraordinary in their fields of expertise, knowledge and experience, this doesn’t automatically translate into the line-manager role of handling and managing their people.
In addition to sharing their know-how with team members, it’s vital for those in leadership positions to be able to manage the people aspects of the job, including conflicts between team members, encouraging open discussions, assigning projects to complete, and more. So, ensure your leaders are set to succeed with the right people-management skills, helping to improving your organization’s employee engagement.
More Ideas to Improving Employee Engagement Will Also Emerge
There you have it. A dozen useful tips to help you and your organization navigate employee engagement.
As you begin putting these top-12 employee engagement tips into practice within your own organization, some additional ideas and tips may surface, as well, that will be key to your own workplace.
Maybe you’d like to consider a rewards program for employees. Or maybe there’s room in the budget for team leaders to add an additional team-building day to their annual plan, bringing team members even closer together and inspiring more opportunities to improving employee engagement.
Whatever the case, consider employee engagement in your organization as an essential piece of the overall strategy to retain and nurture your talent.
Schedule a Haiilo demo today to learn how organizations have improved their employee engagement with Haiilo’s unique employee engagement platform.