Employee engagement is getting the limelight nowadays but not many companies have dealt with them appropriately. One of the reason is the misconceptions they have against it. If your company is facing high turnover, high recurring recruitment cost (which could have been minimized) and stagnant business results, one of the most stable and effective ways to turn the table around is to increase the emotional commitment to your company and the goals.
However, if your understanding of employee engagement is bended towards the following four points, bringing your business to another higher level will be more arduous than your peers who focus on their employees the right way.
Here’s the checklist:
Employee Engagement is the Job of HR department
It’s troubling to see the responsibilities of employee engagement being place on the plate of HR. Someone has got to take up employee engagement and usually, HR department is the one because they are the most appropriate. However, if you place all responsibilities on them, employee engagement will not take its full form. It will also place a lot of pressure on HR personnel to constantly think of initiatives to keep the momentum going. Over time, burn out is a possibility. In fact, employee engagement should be a conscious effort by every individual and every department.
Engaging Employees is a major effort that requires significant amount of expenditure
It is a major effort if you only think of implementing Big-bang changes. For instance, team building events are popular amongst companies and is a frequently employed tactic to knit the team together. Such activities usually cost a bomb and require major effort to organize. As a result, you and your employees will most likely find it a chore rather than deem it energizing. Besides, such events only have a one-time effect of motivating members of your organization. Once the team building event is over and life goes on as usual at work, employees will, as a matter of fact, rather quickly forget about the closeness, drive and empowerment they felt during the team building times.
Therefore, instead of using major events to engage your employees, consider taking baby steps that cost almost nothing. For instance, promote a culture of praises where team members say “Thank you” upfront to that colleague who rendered help. Such action instills positive vibes throughout your organization every single day. Engaging employees need not be an expensive affair that takes up a huge amount of time and resources.
Engagement is a “nice” to have
Profit margins, high customer service ratings, cost reduction and productivity are some business results that companies go after. One commonality between these business results is that they are tangible – way more tangible than employee engagement which is why it becomes a forgotten operation that every company should pay attention to.
If I may stress, employee engagement is not a nice to have. Think about it, your employees are the engines of your business. They are part of your business journey, bringing it from point A to point B. If the engines are not well-taken care of, they are not in a good condition to propel your business to greater heights. As Mr Inamori, CEO of KDDI Corp, aptly puts it in his interview,
If you want eggs, take care of the hen. If you bully or kill the hen, it’s not going to work.
Purposeful, driven and motivated employees don’t just appear. They are achieved through a series of engagement initiatives driven with a strategy.
A change plan will improve employee’s happiness, satisfaction and drive in a month or so
While it is not entirely impossible to make your employees satisfied and happy in a short time, I have to set expectations right that such situations are not common. It does not mean that if you have taken actions to engage your employees, you will see drastic improvements in their emotional commitment to your company or that you will achieve better business results.
Human emotions are greatly involved and hitting the nail on the head is almost rare. Employee engagement is one area where one-size fits all solution does not apply. Think of your workplace as a laboratory. There are experiments where you discover what works and what does not. You learn from failure and adapt towards success. Such an approach provides a higher possibility for companies to thrive and beat their competitors.
Therefore, improvements to employee’s morale are most of the time not immediate. Allow some time and make trial and error an integral process of employee engagement. Results will show up when you least expect it.
So if you have one of the above thoughts checked, it’s time to change your perspective and concept about employee engagement because it is your best bet to achieve amazing results for your business that lasts and keep you ahead of competition.
Image source: Freepik