An employee can be perfectly happy clocking in, going through the motions, clocking out, and then not thinking about work again until tomorrow. While engaged employees can be, and usually are happy employees, being happy doesn’t necessarily mean you are engaged.
An engaged employee is focused on the success of their company and wants to do more than the bare minimum. They advocate for their company outside of work and recruit people they respect to apply when a job opens up. They look forward to going to work because they feel valued. Perks are nice, but company picnics do not make an employee strive to achieve.
Engagement can be an overwhelming subject to tackle for companies, where do you start if the answer isn’t just giving employees more perks?
According to TalentCulture, the first thing you can do is measure it with feedback:
“Employee engagement is completely measurable, with continuous feedback. That’s right – ask questions, collect data and make changes based off of it.
This always makes me think of the little kid who doesn’t want to mow the lawn. They don’t know how to get it started. It’s too big. They don’t know how to make it go. Many of the organizations that I have worked with in the past, don’t take on serious engagement efforts because they are concerned about just how big of a project they’re taking on. Then they start the mower, and realize it’s not all that bad.”
Once you get the ball rolling, make sure employees at all levels have a say:
“Workers and managers at all levels of the organization should be involved in engagement initiatives. While it’s important for execs to lead they way, they could do a much better job at that with some real, front-line insights. Ideas that will make a change in the middle- and lower-level workforce, are going to come from them.
Employee engagement speaker Dave Zinger outlined 21 contemporary employee engagement tools and concepts. He recommends co-creating survey questions with employees. This practice will not only generate more relevant questions, it will also ensure that questions are not phrased or crafted to sway, or influence the answers.”
Engagement seems abstract, but in reality it is a very measurable concept that can boost profits just like any other investment, and it all starts with communication.