Disengaged employees can stop your business from performing at its best and can stifle growth.
Engaged employees are your competitive advantage, developing and growing your business.
So how to you make sure your employees are engaged and more importantly stay engaged? The trick is simply to do something – listen and act; not survey, reflect, feedback, action plan and then at best finally act or at worst do nothing. An oversimplification perhaps and certainly survey’s have their place but reliance on this alone is not enough.
Relationships with employees are important for a number of reasons not least to attract and retain the best talent and avoid employee disputes. So does a focus on employee engagement to improve relationships with those employees mean they stay and deliver performances that develop your business?
Ask your employees for feedback and really listen
Today many larger companies conduct regular employee surveys asking for feedback on what’s working and what isn’t. These can be great tools at raising awareness and highlighting specific areas to target however such surveys can also raise a level of employee expectation which, if not delivered against or managed well, can result in them feeling disgruntled, let down and disengaged!
Gathering feedback from employees can be tricky as many won’t want to say what is really on their mind or will want to stay anonymous. Asking for feedback in a way that removes or lowers barriers by allowing employees to email, text or fill in form that doesn’t identify them might well encourage more honest comments and feedback.
But asking the right questions isn’t enough; communicating the key themes of their feedback and deciding what action to take quickly means your are taking their comments seriously and are committed to the feedback and actions.
Small, visible changes and actions tell employees you are listening and acting on their feedback, encouraging two-way communication which develops your business and employee relationships. Doing this swiftly means employees see changes which build confidence that you are committed to building a long-term relationship.
Listening to employees is key; ask for feedback and really listen to what employees say. Their feedback helps you to understand what motivates your employees a enabling you to target meaningful actions that have the biggest impact on individual and business performance. Focusing on the right things is critical, as this will deliver the biggest impact and results.
Sustaining high engagement levels takes real commitment from business leaders and managers.
They are the key to maintaining that continuous conversation with employees and ensuring constructive feedback is actioned. Those that retain motivated, energetic employees and develop successful businesses have a real commitment to their employees and team, as well as a genuine interest in what is working well, fixing those things that prevent employees performing along the way.
So maybe think about how you felt going into work today?
Are you listening and are you listened to? What do you need to do to get your teams and employees fired up so you maximize their creativity, enthusiasm and motivation?
Please feel free to comment on this blog post, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Do you have some great experiences of engaging employees in your organisation?