Employee Engagement 101
Understanding the concept and impact of employee engagement is not rocket science. Most research shows that employees with higher levels of engagement are more optimistic, more productive and more driven to contribute to the organization’s goals and objectives. Consequently, employees with a lower level of engagement are at risk for high turnover, poor quality of work and negativity.
Employee engagement is a task of the Human Resource (HR) department and a collaborative effort from frontline managers to the top leaders in the company. There is no cookie-cutter approach on how employee engagement should be done, as it varies based on an organization’s needs. However, organizations can implement these initiatives that have been very effective in managing employee engagement:
Instituting Training and Development Programs
With the changing business landscape and merging trends in technology, a continuous upskilling of employees is required. Investing in training and development programs for employees can result in better job effectiveness and performance. In addition, training and developing the skill set of your employees can be a sustainable effort for succession planning. Nothing beats home-grown talent being promoted in their organization equipped with more knowledge and more vital leadership capabilities.
Having Coaching and Feedback Mechanisms
Coaching and feedback should not happen once a year. Having a consistent avenue to discuss performance and maintaining open communication will go a long way. Coaching nowadays is a technique for managing key performance indicators (KPIs) and aims to advance individuals’ personal and professional development. Coaching should be a two-way communication process and a joint effort between the employee and the manager.
Celebrating Small Wins
Small wins and observing them turn a workplace from good to great. Simple gestures such as acknowledging an employee for sharing a bright idea during a brainstorming session, giving out a “thank you” note for reporting to work even during typhoons, and even as small as noticing an employee picking up trash and throwing it in the garbage bin. Recognizing small wins have a massive impact on employee morale, reinforces positive behavior, and creates an atmosphere of appreciation.
Promoting Diversity and Inclusion
With more companies operating globally, promoting diversity and inclusion has been essential in managing business operations. Genuinely diverse and inclusive companies have observed better relationships between peers and employees to managers, thus bringing more creative, more efficient outputs. It also shows that companies embracing diversity and inclusion retain talents and have a better reputation. Ensuring that HR policies protect women, LGBT+, and people of color against discrimination is a critical step for driving diversity and inclusion.
Ensuring Work-Life Balance
Good organizations help employees maintain a balance between work and life outside the office. Providing an adequate rest period and approving paid vacation leaves can relieve stress from work and let the employee focus on equally important things such as quality time with family and relaxation. Employees who get periodic rest become more productive.
Employment engagement is not just a one-time activity. It should be a consistent and continuously evolving set of activities tailored to the organization’s changing needs. Periodically measuring employee engagement is key to managing employee engagement. Companies invest and work closely with engagement companies that offer surveys and analysis to maximize this benefit. Not having enough financial resources should not be an excuse for starting engagement initiatives for small to medium enterprises. Surveys or focus group discussions with employees can bring insights into the level of engagement of its employees.
Most organizations nowadays are going beyond the traditional employee-employer relationships. They focus on building a stronger connection between the employee and the company through employee engagement. Building and championing a culture of engagement will bring about the best out of the employees and equally compensate for the organization’s goals and objectives.
Eron Jose is a Master of Business Administration student at the Ramon V. Del Rosario College of Business, De La Salle University. He has been a BPO manager for years and is a big advocate of employee engagement. He can be reached at [email protected]
The views expressed above are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official position of DLSU, its faculty, and its administrators.
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