One out of seven employees is miserable at work. Disengaged employees can affect an organization’s performance, productivity, and profitability. They can create a stressful work environment. On the other hand, happy and engaged employees can propel a company to greater heights.
However, employee engagement can be a challenging feat to achieve, and senior leaders need to constantly create a good employee experience. Let’s discuss the importance of employee engagement in the modern-day workplace, along with the best practices to increase employee engagement.
What Are Engaged Employees?
An engaged employee has an emotional commitment to the organization and its end objectives. Employees are of two types. The first type of employee works only for a paycheck or the next promotion. They aren’t interested in the company’s growth and welfare. Once they get a better opportunity, they won’t hesitate in leaving your company.
On the other hand, the second type of employee – engaged employee –considers themself an integral part of the company. They align their goals with the company’s objectives, and the paycheck and promotion are secondary for them.
In a nutshell, when employees care for the organization they work for, they are engaged. And when they are engaged, they go the extra mile to get the work done.
Why Do You Need Engaged Employees?
Research shows that companies with engaged employees are 21% more profitable. Employees are the most critical asset of any organization. A business may have a fantastic product and strategy, but if it doesn’t have the right employees, the business won’t succeed. When you have engaged employees, your company goals become achievable, and you can accomplish big tasks.
Here are seven essential benefits of employee engagement.
Engaged Employees Are More Productive
Employee engagement is directly proportional to productivity. Engaged employees are personally invested in the work. They want to perform better and help their team and company win. Such employees take responsibility for their actions and remain more focused and productive.
Improved Team Performance
A team full of happy employees is likely to perform better than a team with employees who just want to go home at 5 pm. Employee engagement builds a positive team culture, enabling each member to perform at a higher level. When a team performs well, employee morale increases, further boosting employee engagement, productivity, and performance.
Engaged Employees Attain Goals
Setting and achieving goals is an essential aspect of any workplace. However, few employees end up achieving their targets. Engagement plays a vital role in an employee’s ability to attain their goals. When employees are happy and focused, the task at hand becomes easier. They work with positive intent, enabling them to achieve their goals more often.
Lower Workplace Stress and Burnout
Imagine managing a team of highly dissatisfied and disengaged individuals. There’ll be a lot of quarrels and arguments, which will add up to workplace stress. A tense workplace environment can adversely affect employee productivity and performance.
On the other hand, a workplace with engaged employees will have low-stress levels, as everyone will feel happy and supported. This also reduces the risk of employee burnout arising from chronic and unsuccessfully managed workplace stress.
Engaged employees love to show up at work. They want to be at their desk every day and contribute to the company’s success. Disengaged employees, on the other hand, will find excuses to take leaves. If you notice an employee is taking more stick leaves, they could be losing engagement.
Higher Employee Retention
The biggest benefit of employee engagement is higher employee retention. Companies spend thousands of dollars every year to find new employees. Filling even one vacant position requires filtering through hundreds of resumes and conducting dozens of interviews. After hiring an employee, you need to take care of the onboarding process.
Engaged employees are less likely to leave the company. Thus, you’ll have fewer vacant positions and need to spend less time and effort on finding new employees.
How to Get Engaged Employees?
There is no way to find an already engaged employee. It’s the responsibility of senior leaders, managers, and the HR department to create an engaging and supportive culture for employees. Let’s look at five effective ways to engage your employees.
Avoid Creating Tension
Managers often end up creating tension without even realizing it. A big reason for workplace stress is micromanagement. If you expect your employees to work and behave specifically, it’ll create unnecessary tension. While setting rules, expectations, and guidelines is essential, allow your employees to be their authentic selves. This is especially true for employees working from their homes.
Discover the True Potential of Each Employee
As a leader, you’re responsible for identifying the strengths and weaknesses of each employee and aligning them with the company’s goals. Determine what an employee is capable of achieving and what are their weak areas. Then, help them capitalize on their strengths and overcome their weaknesses.
Put Power in Their Hands
Putting your employees in a position of influence can go a long way in increasing engagement. Encourage them to share ideas and make crucial decisions. The micromanagement example also applies here. Avoid micromanaging, so your employees can become independent and make important calls by themselves.
Give Them Credit
Employee appreciation is one of the biggest contributors to engagement. When you appreciate your employees for their contribution, they will work harder and go the extra mile to achieve their goals. It’s equally important to have an employee’s back if they fail to perform or make the wrong decision. Show confidence in them even if they don’t do well and act as a guiding light.
Working professionals join a company because of growth opportunities, but they leave it because of low engagement and recognition. Therefore, creating an engaging experience for your employees is essential for the long-term success and well-being of a company.
Leaders can increase employee engagement by taking an employee-centric management approach. This includes empowering employees to make important decisions, appreciating their contribution, helping them improve, and supporting them in bad times.
What steps would you take to increase employee engagement?