All around the world, businesses struggle to engage their employees. According to a global survey cited by Forbes, “less than one-quarter of employees are highly engaged and 39% are moderately engaged. Low levels of engagement among employees contributes to decreased customer satisfaction, slower revenue growth, high turnover, high absenteeism rates, and a myriad of other issues that negatively impact day-to-day operations as well as the bottom line.
There are many reasons why employee engagement might be low. However, one of the biggest issues is leadership. As noted in a Business Insider article, “people don’t leave jobs; they leave managers.” The behaviors and actions of those in leadership positions have a direct impact on employee engagement.
The question remains: “What can the leaders in your organization do to get and keep employees engaged boost engagement?”
Here are a few things that OnPoint has observed leaders doing to improve employee engagement:
1: Focusing On Employee Development
Top-class leaders in many organizations have improved employee engagement by focusing on employee development and career opportunities. These include:
- Providing Ongoing Coaching and Feedback. The best leaders help guide their employees on the job—providing coaching and feedback that enables the employee to perform better over time. Ongoing coaching has the additional benefit of making the employee feel that their supervisor cares about their development.
- Holding Career Discussions with Employees. “Where do you see yourself in five years?” isn’t just a question for job interviews. Employees need to see a chance for progress compared to their peers. As one Harvard Business Review article notes, “job hunting jumps 16% after [class] reunions.” This is because “they’re natural occasions for people to measure their progress relative to others.” Leaders who take the time to have career discussions with employees can prevent feelings of inadequacy and stagnation, which improves employee retention and engagement.
- Creating Employee Development Plans. Beyond simply discussing potential career paths for employees, the most effective leaders create plans to help employees develop new skills and to take on new roles—or enhance existing skills to increase effectiveness. Documenting these plans and involving employees in their creation helps ensure that they understand what is expected of them and how to proceed. It also increases their sense of ownership and commitment to the plan.
By focusing on employee development, leaders can demonstrate that they are invested in their employees while improving employee skills and future prospects. This helps make employees feel valued and builds trust between employees and their leaders.
2: Creating a Supportive Work Environment
The best leaders are able to cultivate a supportive environment for their employees to work in. One way that leaders can do this is to be approachable and accessible for employees who need to talk. However, simply having an “open door” policy isn’t enough.
Ed Catmull, president of Pixar during the studio’s work on the hit movie Toy Story, had an open door policy and, as noted in a Forbes article, “still basking in the afterglow of Toy Story… found out that all of his producers wanted to leave. They felt Go to the full article.
Source:: Business 2 Community