Employee Engagement is one key area that affects all KPI's and yet is so often overlooked in lieu of deficit management reviews. It is well documented, that outdated deficit management has never improved engagement, and has more likely resulted in employees leaving organisations. Here are six tips, to support you in improving engagement today, these tips are based on my experience and survey statistics.
1# If you do not measure it, you cannot manage it.Employee engagement surveys are the quickest way to understand where an organisation, business unit or a specific project is off or on track, long before financial and reporting gets to the top of an organisation. Data is available via whole of business or by short and quick pulse surveys. The best way by far to understand a business is to survey engagement levels of those who generate the revenue and not sit around waiting for surprise results.
2# Focus on Purpose and not on profitDo not get me wrong, businesses need to turn a profit in order to survive. However when it comes to engaging employees, they are not concerned about profit, they are more likely to be attracted to the purpose of an organisation and what underpins the culture than profitability. This is truer when engaging Millennials, engage them in the future, a bigger picture and the purpose of a business and you will retain them.
3# Communicate in a style that your employees listen to, their own, Natural TalentThere are in excess of seven billion people in the world today, this would tell me that there are seven billion ways to do something. Imagine how powerful it would be to tap into all this knowledge? AI is coming! On a smaller scale, your employees all have ideas and a different way of thinking and doing. Understanding Natural Talent goes a long way to improving engagement while allowing you to communicate in a style that each employee understands. Communication becomes succinct and results more aligned with your expectation. 4# Flatten organisational structures in favour of matrix networking environments Receiving accurate information through the layers of an organisational chart are likened to Chinese whispers, information is distorted as it goes up and down, which leads to confusion. Management does not understand why the results go south, and employees do not understand why management never listen. Managers who regularly get out of their office and create an environment where titles and egos are left at the door, opinions are valued and options shared shall engage employees quickly. A manager who becomes the student shall benefit from the employee's' knowledge and change a culture along the way. Contribution from employees is engaging.
5# Traditional Deficit Management has gone stale along with the feedback sandwichOngoing conversations with employees are engaging, they reinforce relationships and underpin a culture where employees are valued, the days of 360 degree and annual tick a box performance reviews have long gone. As to, the feedback sandwich? Zoning out and not listening to the two great things you did well while focussing on the area for improvement. There are good reasons why people are not good at something; they are not good at it, or they are just not interested. All the coaching and mentoring in the world will only ever make them ordinary at the task in question. They are more likely to leave an organisation rather than being bored learning something they dislike.
6# Experimentation is the new Planning, bring out the revenue generatorsAs mentioned in Tip one. Data and knowledge are available sooner at the source of revenue. Employes that generate the revenue should be involved in the operational planning of the business and not rely upon tasking this to their managers, one degree of separation from the source of revenue is enough to result in disengagement and blame when things go wrong. The revenue generators are fantastic and enjoy experimentation, they do it all the time in improving what they do daily. Engage with these employees and experiment, with ideas and evolve a business as opposed to having a plan developed by those who are removed by more than two degrees from the revenue generators sending it down without consultation to be implemented.
7# Some bonus statistics
- Statistics from our High-Performance Thinking workshops are: 46% of employees have some form a psychological blockage that prevents them from behaving normally as stated in their own words and 12% do not want to work for the organisation.
- 27% of employees agree that feedback they receive helps them do their work better
- 22% say that my performance is managed in a way that motivates me
- 19% say that they talked to their manager about steps to reach goals
- 1:2 employees leave as a result of the relationship with their manager
- 3:10 workers agree that the company's performance management system helped improve their performance
- 18% of all managerial appointments are correct
- 95% of managers are dissatisfied with their performance management system
- Increased employee engagement shall impact every KPI positively