Why should you care about employee engagement? Well, do you want to have productive employees? Would you like to increase your retention? Do you want to strengthen your bottom line? Do you want to increase happiness and well being?
The majority would probably say yes to the questions above. That is because the right mindset will make your business thrive (Snack Nation). Engaged, proud, challenged and free employees will function as cogwheels for the entire organization. Whereas unhappy, dissatisfied and unmotivated employees, they will act the complete opposite. Some might think to themselves, but is that my job to make them love what they do? Both yes and no. You cannot force someone to love finance if they don’t. But you could make someone who loves finance become their best selves by giving them the right foundation to grow on. How do you do that? First of all, you talk to them. It is your job to know your employees. Second, you set them free.
Employee engagement hacks
Sharon Green is the author of the Human Workforce Manifesto and a strong believer of allowing your employees to fail and to set them free. She was recently a part of Local Glimpse new podcast called A Bunch of People, but she has also been a part of a practical event on employer branding in March 2019. One of many passions of Sharon is that she believes in human power. Organizations can create magic with the right employees and mindset. However, the mindset will not be developed by itself. The top management needs to set the tone and walk the talk. No one will take advice from someone who doesn’t follow it themselves right? Sharon’s 3 tips on how to increase employees engagement are:
- Freedom of failure
- Speak the same language
- Thank them
Believe in your employees
Setting your employee’s free means trust in them. When managers trust their employees they will be free. Free employees tend to become more creative and explorative. For employer ears that should sound good, because it directly translates to; things will be happening without you having to point fingers. Let them try and fail to build stronger teams and develop new solutions. Teambuilding strengthens when teams actually integrate and both fall and thrive together. However, it has to come from top management. Employees will not just start testing new things and anchor up with the person sitting next to them. It’s the top management who have to encourage the organization to do it. How to it? Manage settings, like a breakfast or such, where employees from different departments are given the time to chat without having to feel stressed about “missing time” from their actual work. Reduce unnecessary stress. Make them understand that integrating with the entire organization is a part of their job description.
A common language
We all see life from different lenses. We all have our different interpretation of words. Why does this matter for you as a manager? It matters because you need to know that you and the employee talk about the same thing to be on the same page regarding expectations. Sharon gave us an example of bravery. What does bravery mean to you? For someone, it might mean jumping out of an airplane, for someone else it might mean asking for help. Same concept with support. Support for someone is a helping hand and for others, it might be cheering someone on to do great things. Remember to understand your employees to set the right expectations. When you agree on the same expectations you know where you have each other – and that goes for both ways. The employee has to know who you as a manager are as well. Therefore, share who you are, how you like to work, how you like to have your communication and when you feel proud and what you need to work on. Show emotions, we are humans.
Thank them for all that they do!
Remember, if you don’t thank the ones who are doing a good job. How will they ever know that they did a good job? Don’t take your employees for granted. They should be unique to you and your business. Employee engagement will grow with the employees who feel appreciated and seen for what they do. Employees are the machinery of all businesses, without them, everything would stop. Take the time to thank them.
Employee engagement doesn’t happen by itself. Neither is it just a business buzzword that can be used without deeper meaning and true actions. It evolves in a culture where it is acceptable to try new things, to interact with colleagues, where people communicate and where people appreciate their work. The list of perks of having engaged employees are long. Everyone should aim to get reach the point where your employees encourage others to be engaged, without having to tell or push them to do so. Whether you reach it successfully or not is dependent on both the people and the company. However, by applying the 3 advice mentioned in this article, you’re on a good way to get there.