Employee engagement is the level of emotional commitment that your workers have towards achievement of your organization’s goals and vision. Does your company have an engaged workforce?
The backbone of any organization is its human capital. The level of commitment of its employees is what will determine whether an organization can compete and win. As management, you need to appreciate that your employees are your greatest asset and ensure that your employees work in a friendly environment which is conducive enough for them to realize their full potential.
Regardless of the size of the company, employee engagement is critical for the success of that company. Employee engagement gives your company competitive advantage in your industry. A recent Gallup poll has shown that 70% of employees are disengaged from their current jobs. This statistic is saddening considering the importance of having your employees emotionally committed to your company. Management must assess the level of employee disengagement in their organization and devise ways to counter it.
Employee satisfaction is not necessarily employee engagement
Most executives confuse the two terms. An employee may be satisfied with their work but is not engaged to their employment. Employee satisfaction means that a worker will carry out their duties diligently and perform as required.
A satisfied employee will show up to work at 9 and leave at 5 without complaining. However, since this employee is not engaged they will not go the extra mile to help in the achievement of the company’s goals.
That extra effort from an employee is what will make your company shine above the rest. When an employee is satisfied but not engaged, a 10% pay raise from your competitor will make them go running to them with no apologies.
Why are so many employees disengaged?
- Company culture – When an employee does not fit into the company culture, they tend to disengage. When one is job hunting, they tend to settle for whatever comes their way as long the pay is right. It is important to keep in mind a recruit’s personality when recruiting an individual to ensure that they match with your company’s culture.
- Feeling undervalued – Recognizing employees’ efforts and giving them credit for a job well done will make them feel engaged. 37% of employees reported that their bosses did not give them credit for tasks they accomplished. The feeling of not being valued will make employees disengage and fast!
- Career goals – When there is a mismatch between an employee’s career goals and the vision of the company, there is a disconnect that will keep employees disengaged from their work. Yes, they will show up for work but they will not commit fully to their job.
Fundamental Costs of Employee Disengagement
- High employee turnover
One of the biggest signs of lack of employee engagement in an organization is the frequency with which people quit their jobs. High employee turnover implies that the workers are not happy with the working conditions of the company.
Regular resignation by employees is expensive and will cost the organization. Recruiting an employee is not cheap since the vacant positions have to be advertised. The human resource department will require constant funding to fill up the vacant positions which eat up into the company’s profit margins. Not to mention the great time investment in screening resumes and conducting interviews, etc…
- Unproductive workers
When an employee is disengaged, their productivity decreases. This is obviously a bad thing for employers. If management uses productivity as a bench mark for employee engagement, they may get frustrated. They will come to find quickly the many inefficiencies that exist in their company.
An employee may feel that they do not need to perform since no one is concerned with their well being. They also may not feel they need to perform if they look around and see a lack of recognition for good work. Why go the extra mile if it isn’t even going to be recognized? Engaging an employee helps them commit and go over and above their call of duty. Increased employee engagement results in improved productivity.
- Reduced employee collaboration
There is nothing as good as teamwork between employees. By employees collaborating, there will tremendous growth in the company. They will bring their own unique perspectives and talents to the table where they can be better leveraged for the organization. A disengaged employee shies from collaboration with their colleagues.
Lack of collaboration drives the company’s margins down. Employee collaboration brings forth great ideas and solutions that are also easy to come by. It is important for an employer to have an engagement strategy for its employees.
- Disappearance of employee input
Disengaged employees will not be willing to bring forth suggestions that may steer the company forward. Since the employee does not feel appreciated, they tend to retain any fresh ideas that they may have.
New ideas and processes are the boost that your company needs to stand out in the industry. A good source of these ideas and processes is your employees. So if your employee is disengaged they tend to withhold these useful thoughts.
- Reduced sales
Sales are vital for your company to thrive. A good sales team will drive customers to your company. When an employee is disengaged, they will not own your brand and consequently will fail to market it appropriately.
Owning a brand shows when an employee is making a sales pitch. People can tell if you really believe in your brand. Clearly, if an employee doesn’t feel that they belong to a particular brand, it will show and their sales will be suffer.
Here’s a few ways to engage your employee:
- Conduct an employee engagement survey – Doing this will help receive feedback from the employees on their thoughts about the company. Ensure that you collect data that is relevant and actionable from the survey. It will also show the employees that you are open to their opinions and thoughts.
- Act on the data collected – when you receive feedback from your employees, act on it. What is the use of collecting data feedback from employees just to pile it in the records office?
- Engage at the Local Levels – Depending on the size of your organization, there exists work groups. As a manager, you can engage employees in these work groups since that is their comfort zone.
- Recognize Life Events – sure we have office birthday parties, but there are so many more life events that come up in an employees life. Maybe they have a baby or experience a death in the family. Recognizing these life events allows us to send the appropriate message when it matters most. Check out our life event gifts for your employees!
- Have the right management – Most employees disengage from their employers since their bosses don’t treat them right. A disconnect between managers and employees will definitely lead to employee disengagement. So, hire the right managers.
Make your employees your priority, and this will have your company soaring to the greatest heights of success.