Four Ways to Maximize Employee Engagement
Small business owners, perhaps better than anyone, understand the importance of having engaged people at work. Everyday requires a large deal of work get accomplished by a small number of employees. Yet studies such as Gallup’s State of the American Workforce and the SHRM/Globeforce’s 2015 Employee Recognition Report show this is getting harder and harder to achieve, as at least 50% of employees are not fully engaged or feel valued.
Now consider the many backgrounds of your workforce. This includes different generations, cultural backgrounds, ages, education and lifestyles. So based on the new realities of the workplace, engagement tactics and communication clearly need to require a small business owner’s constant attention.
Employers must understand how to keep engagement levels high throughout the careers of their employees. Dips and downward slides in engagement reduce performance and customer satisfaction – and yes, increase turnover. Author, William Schiemann of Fulfilled! Critical Choices: Work, Home, Life offers four key actions to minimize disengagement and reboot engagement to new highs.
Make it Work-Life Integration.
Firstly, there often isn’t a distinct boundary between home life and work anymore. Employees send and respond to texts and emails in the evening and on the weekends. Yet are often afraid to address personal issues that come during the workday. This leads to stress about work/home conflicts and reduced engagement.
Employers need to recognize the interconnectedness of workers’ lives and that good and bad times traverse all spheres of work, family, health, hobbies, etc. Small businesses often have an advantage in that they can touch base with most employees relatively easily if they make the commitment to doing so. This can lead to focusing on results and not just time spent in the office and to taking time to review workloads to ensure that workers are not becoming overloaded and headed for burnout.
Build Employee Resilience.
Staying competitive today is a tough job. Small businesses need workers to increasingly multitask and push through barriers to stay ahead of the game. Employers need to provide employees with the guidance, resources, and skills through training and tools to keep moving forward in their jobs and their lives.
Engagement can’t be given to people. Employees need to feel and value it. Accordingly, organizations can achieve this by passing on more authority and accountability to employees. This empowers them to make decisions and take action to accomplish results. Recognizing those results provides the value to ensure continued engagement.
Learn How to Engage Others.
Finally, help managers learn how to engage employees. Small business owners that report success often have helped their team and individuals achieve not only their work goals, but their personal goals as well. As a result, managers need to learn through communication and listening about those that report to them and how to help each of them succeed in their own way.