Concerning results from Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace report suggest that just 13 percent of global employees are fully engaged with their jobs. Additional research from Gallup indicates that absense of a culture of engagement costs the United States an annual $550 billion in lost productivity. The good news? It’s possible to develop a culture of engagement, as indicated below:
1. Run a Purpose-Driven Organization
Employees feel more engaged when they believe that their efforts actually make a difference. Hence, the greater satisfaction among employees at organizations that identify as purpose-driven. According to Path to Purpose author Bill Damon, to be purpose-driven means to possess a “long-term, forward-looking intention to accomplish aims that are…of consequence to the world beyond the self.” Research from Deloitte Insights points to a higher employee retention rate at mission-driven companies with a culture of engagement.
2. Give Employees a Say to Create a Culture of Engagement
Employees at all levels want to feel as if they have a voice. They appreciate corporate leaders who regularly seek their input — and actually consider or even act on their suggestions. The first step to creating a culture of engagement? Increasing the frequency of employee surveys and infusing them with open-ended questions that go beyond the usual multiple-choice format.
3. Recognize Employees Who Go Above And Beyond
From gift cards to social media shout-outs, employees crave recognition. High-performing employees push harder if they expect their efforts to be rewarded. According to a TjInsite poll, 35 percent of employees regard lack of recognition as the greatest roadblock to productivity. Recognition doesn’t always have to involve singling out select employees; entire teams may prove more productive if recognized or rewarded for their communal achievements.
4. Hold Managers Accountable To Create More Employee Engagement
Managers play a critical role in keeping employees motivated and keeping employee engagement high. Management expert Victor Lipman firmly believes that people quit managers, not jobs. The most effective managers understand the value of not only short-term productivity but also long-term employee engagement.
Employees want to work for companies that have a culture of engagement and that are invested in their long-term growth. This means training not only with the intent of improving current job performance, but also in hopes of developing skills that will help employees make progress on their desired career trajectory. Training should equip employees with the skills needed to achieve challenging, yet manageable workplace goals. This, in turn, drives greater job satisfaction, and ultimately, an engaged workforce. Employee engagement is critical to productivity and innovation — and should therefore be a priority at organizations of all sizes and in all industries. A concerted effort to improve engagement could produce a satisfied, high-achieving workforce made up of individuals who firmly believe in your company’s mission.
Walter is Projections’ CEO and the founder of UnionProof & A Better Leader. As the creator of Union Proof Certification, Walter provides expert advice, highly effective employee communication resources and ongoing learning opportunities for Human Resources and Labor Relations professionals.