Employee engagement and job satisfaction are alarmingly low across the world despite the best efforts of the organisations to control the damage. In fact, 2 out of 3 employees are not engaged with their organisation and only 45% of them are satisfied with their jobs. This is not only the crisis for organisations but for the individuals as well.
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Low employee engagement in particular can result in drastic consequences for companies. It can create problems like employee attrition, reduced tolerance to changing economic conditions, inconsistency and lack of goodwill for the organisation they work for. Due to low employee engagement and job satisfaction, organisation loses its top talent which in turn has negative impact on its performance.
So, what are the measures organisations can take to better engage their employees and keep them happy and satisfied?
What is Employee Engagement?
First of all, it is important to understand what is employee engagement? To most organisations and even individuals, employee engagement is all about being happy and satisfied with the job and organisation. However, this statement is everything but true because you will take calls of competitors who want to take you away at minimal raise even if you are happy and satisfied with your current job. Employee engagement is the emotional commitment of employee with organisational goals. The more committed he is, more diligently and sincerely he will work to achieve those goals. This will also mean that he is least likely to leave the organisation at least for higher salary.
Opportunity and Crisis for Business:
There is no denying of the fact that low employee engagement is a crisis for business but sometimes, it also becomes an opportunity. Most turnaround CEOs such as Doug Conant of Campbell’s Soup strongly believe in the principle that you must first win the marketplace if you want to win the market. The Campbell’s Soup once suffered from lowest employee engagement the fortune 500 companies have ever seen. As a result, they lost more than 50% of their market value.
What Doug Conner did when he was appointed as CEO of Campbell’s Soup that he tried to better engage the employees. He implemented the 10:6:2 rule which states that every 10% improvement in commitment increases employees’ effort by 6% which in turn improve their performance by 2%. Similarly, there is a 10:9 which states that 10% improvement in engagement decreases employees’ probability of departure by 9%.Doug knew these triggers and tried his level best to increase employee engagement in the organisation and his efforts turned out to be very fruitful as Campbell’s Soup made a remarkable comeback within years.
Engagement Profit Chain:
Employee engagement also initiates a very simply yet interesting chain process. High employee engagement will result in high service retention which ensures customer satisfaction and loyalty, two biggest assets for any company. High engagement also makes employees more productive and all these factors combine to help organisation grow and earn more profits.
Crisis and Opportunity for Families:
Low employee engagement cannot only negatively impact performance in the organisation but it can also create problems for them at home. For instance, being disengaged at work means you will very likely come back home with a negative mood and will misbehave with your parents, wife and children. You will punish your children for trifles which will make them disobedient, shy and they will probably suffer from anxiety as well. In fact, there is plethora of domestic problems which are the product of low engagement at work.
How to Achieve Maximum Engagement?
In the context of above discussion, it has become mandatory for business leaders to strive for achieving maximum employee engagement in their workplace. As a matter of fact, employees’ relation with manager determines how they feel about their work and therefore, it is his role to keep them engaged and motivated. In this regard, growth, recognition and trust are three drivers of engagement in the workplace.
Sustainable growth is the target of every organisation, whether big or small. However, they should also focus on the continuous growth of the employees in order to attain their goal. Again, it is the duty of the manager to focus on their strengths and weaknesses which will increase engagement by 61% and 45% respectively. As a result, they will work harder to help organisation achieve its target of sustainable growth. On the contrary, when manager gives no feedback about employees’ performance, they become more disengaged and this adversely affects organisational performance.
Recognising and appreciating employees for their work is one of the best methods to improve employee engagement. The process of strategic recognition includes saying thanks first of all followed by especially mentioning the behaviour the manager is grateful for. Last but not the least; manager should also explain how important employee’s contribution is for the company and how it will impact the overall performance.
Developing trust with employees is another method to keep them motivated. It is not something ethical but it is about authenticity and transparency. Building trust with employees will help managers to focus on long term goals and strategic planning in addition with setting goals specifically for his team. Furthermore, employees will feel more comfortable, safer and happier and do their best for the betterment and welfare of the organisation.
Low employee engagement can be a catastrophe for you but blessing for your competitors. Therefore, it is your own responsibility to do everything possible to keep them engaged, happy and satisfied. It is for your own good and worth spending money because if you refuse to accept the reality, your business can go to dogs as well.