Keeping an Eye on Employee Engagement

It seems I never tire of talking about employee engagement and how the simplest of actions can produce outstanding results in any company. People naturally want to be included in the conversation, consulted on their ideas and visions, and know “the latest” in their company.

What would keep managers and supervisors from this inclusion process? What holds people back from sharing important information that only strengthens the employee-supervisor bond of respect? I wish I had the answer.

What I do know is that awareness is key in breaking up this disengagement phenomenon in companies. We must be willing to find out the source of the problem and in so doing, will make major strides. A show of interest, simple conversations is a great start!

Employee engagement is crucial to any organization’s success: Engaged employees are more productive, they produce higher-quality work, they have better overall morale, they have fewer issues with absenteeism, they are better teammates, and they have lower turnover.

But before you can tackle any potential employee engagement problems, you need to understand whether there’s an engagement problem in the first place and get to the bottom of the sources and causes of that lack of engagement.

We’ve talked a great deal about ways to improve employee engagement, with suggestions such as incentives for performance, opportunities for advancement, and buy-in to the company mission.

Here are some strategies for getting a better understanding of your company’s employee engagement.

Monitor the Symptoms

Employee engagement is often difficult to quantify. Still, we know that lack of engagement contributes to the problems discussed earlier. One way to identify engagement problems, therefore, is to monitor the symptoms of poor engagement.

If you see productivity or quality drop, or if absenteeism or turnover increases, it can be a sign of changes in the level of employee engagement.

Talk to Your Employees

When trying to get a handle on the level of engagement among your employees, why not go to the source? According to a Deloitte survey, nearly 80% of employers survey their employees annually or less frequently. That’s not nearly frequent enough.

Employers should be constantly talking to their employees about their level of engagement—how satisfied are they with their jobs? How committed are they to the company mission? These questions can be asked in the form of surveys, or their answers can be deduced through one-on-one discussions with managers and their staff.

Exit Interviews

It’s rarely good when an employee leaves, but it does provide an opportunity to find out what is contributing to turnover. Exit interviews can be a good way to do this, as you can ask departing staff about what caused them to leave.

Although the decision may simply be prompted by an opportunity for higher pay or better benefits, employees often decide to leave an organization because of a lack of engagement and the company’s culture.

Employee engagement is part of the bedrock of a successful organization, and it manifests itself in a variety of areas, ranging from productivity and quality of work to turnover and absenteeism.

The problem many organizations face is that they don’t know enough about how engaged their employees are and what is standing in the way of potential improvements in employee engagement. It’s essential for employers to find a way to keep their ears to the ground and keep an eye on employee engagement.

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