Using an Employee Engagement survey is a good start to building engaged employees, but they require action
If employees truly are an organisation’s best asset, as many organisations say, then listening to them and and supporting their development should be a priority. this is not always what happens though. When we run a survey on engagement or culture it is essential to act on the information we gather or the Employee Engagement survey or Culture survey becomes useless. As Employees we don’t check our personalities at the door when we come to work. Knowing we are respected as individuals at work can have a significant impact on how we view our overall lives and our participation in the organisation. Employee Engagement is about recognising how an employee’s unique set of beliefs, talents, goals, and life experiences drives their performance, personal success, and well-being.
As managers and leaders we need to get to know our people – who they are, not just the job they do. Each interaction has the potential to influence their engagement levels and inspire the to use their discretionary effort. How we manage our teams can substantially impact engagement levels in our workplace, and in turn the organisation’s bottom line. Here are 6 ways to help build engaged employees:
- Take action on the Employee Engagement survey each time. When a we ask our employees for their opinions, those employees expect us to take action and to follow up. But management often makes the mistake of using the wrong employee surveys to collect irrelevant data or information that is impossible to act on. Using the right survey with specific data that is relevant and actionable is essential for any organisation.
- Focus on engagement across the organisation. Though change occurs at the team level, it continues and becomes part of the “way we do business” only when leaders set the tone from the top and roll out changes across the organisation. Organisation succeed more often when they realise the benefits of engagement initiatives happen when employee engagement becomes part of the performance expectations for managers, and the leadership support them so they can execute on those expectations. Both managers and employees must feel supported and empowered to make a difference in their immediate work environment. Leaders of teams should work with direct reports to identify barriers to engagement and discover opportunities to create positive change. Employees will often have some of the best ideas on how to maximise engagement and deliver improved performance, business innovation, and better workplace experiences and are normally more willing to share when we listen and act on their suggestions.
- Hire and develop the right managers. The best managers understand that their success and that of the organisation relies on employees’ achievements, and part of their role is to care about their people’s success. When they seek to understand each person’s strengths and provide each member of their team support to develop and opportunities to use their strengths in their role success becomes easier. Exceptional managers recognise and value their team member’s contributions, empower employees to act and actively seek their ideas and opinions. Selecting people who have this ability to lead and care is important. Businesses that carefully select managers for the unique talent it takes to effectively manage people significantly increase their odds of engaging employees in the organisation – whether they hire from outside or develop from within.
- Develop managers and hold them accountable for their employees’ engagement. Research by Gallup has found that the employs relationship with their manager isa key element in employees’ engagement levels. Organisations should develop and coach managers to take an active role in building engagement plans. Managers need to be held accountable for these plans, tracking progress and ensure that they continuously focus on emotionally intelligent engagement with their employees. Highly successful managers view the Gallup Q12 not just questions for measuring engagement but as the framework for developing engaged employees.
- Define engagement goals in tangible everyday terms. Leaders need to make engagement goals meaningful and relevant in the employees’ day-to-day experiences. Describe what success looks like using relatable analogies and emotive language that helps give meaning to the engagement goals and builds commitment within the team.
- Make Engagement an ongoing conversation. It is not enough to focus on Engagement when the time comes for that employee engagement survey. Make discussions of employee engagement part of weekly meetings, planning sessions and in one-on-one touch points with employees to ensure engagement becomes part of the organisation’s culture.
Leaders in the best organisations strategically align their employee engagement efforts with behaviours and the culture of the organisation. They find ways to repeatedly communicate engagement’s impact throughout and share best practices across the organisation wit hotter teams and leaders. Effective Engaged leaders use every touchpoint, opportunity and a variety of communication channels to reinforce and recognise the organisation’s commitment to employee engagement and building and engaged innovative people-centric culture. Employee Engagement becomes a way of life not just a buzz word repeated once a year when the Engagement survey comes around.
Using Employee Engagement surveys to Building engaged employees requires action
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