Employee engagement is a “hot topic” in companies across industries. Leaders from the boardroom to the front lines are talking about it. It’s important because a lack of employee engagement can be linked to high turnover rates, low job satisfaction, reduced productivity, and even safety.
If you type “employee engagement” into your favorite search engine, you will instantly have dozens, if not hundreds, of resources related to this topic at your fingertips: Articles, books, eLearning programs, and workshops that promise to help you solve your organization’s engagement issues.
If only there was some secret formula that all companies could follow that would guarantee increased employee engagement. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case. A simple, common formula doesn’t exist because people, and the organizations they work for, are all different. What works for one company may not work for another. In fact, an approach that works for individual contributors might not work for senior leadership in the same company.
For example, companies like Google, Adobe, and Costco rank high on employee engagement success lists. Yet, each of these companies have completely different employee engagement strategies.
Many organizations have tried to replicate engagement building strategies from successful companies, but it just doesn’t seem to deliver the expected results.
That’s because companies with high levels of employee engagement have created a formula that is unique to the company culture and employees.
With that said, maybe there is a secret formula after all: In order to improve your own company’s level of employee engagement, you need to develop an organization-specific program that is designed with your company culture, assets, and employees in mind.
So how do you go about developing such a program that is tailored for your business? There are specific steps you can take that will support your efforts and ensure your plan is aligned with the organization.
The first step you can take is to learn everything you can about your company culture and employees. Corporate culture goes beyond the Mission Statement and Vision—although these elements provide important clues.
An anonymous survey can also provide insights about employee engagement. It can be a good place to start as you begin planning.
A survey can help you know more about what your employees, leaders, and others expect and experience.
But, the real discovery comes when you sit down and talk with leaders, managers, and employees.
The truth is, unless you take the time to really understand the wants and needs of your employees, it will be very difficult to design a meaningful employee engagement process.
Understanding deepens when you observe people at work, in meetings, and across the lunch table.
Developing relationships with your employees shows them that you care and are interested in their success.
Here are a few questions it is important to ask and answer as part of this first step:
- Who are your employees? (demographics, skills, length of time with the organization, education, etc.)
- What is important to your employees?
- What is important to you? What outcome are you looking for?
- What does engagement mean to your company?
- How are you going to measure engagement?
- What is the company culture? Is it all business? Is there a focus on health and wellness? Is fun and excitement provided or encouraged?
At the Center for Management and Organization Effectiveness (CMOE) we understand that finding the right formula for increasing employee engagement can get overwhelming and confusing. It can be even more challenging to effectively implement.
At CMOE, we will work with you to design a formula specific for your unique needs and circumstances. We know that a clear strategy is the roadway to success and we want to help you achieve your vision of successful employee engagement. Contact us to get started today.