We’re not even 2 months into 2018 and it has already been slated as the year of the employee experience
(EX). EX is described as the sum of everything an employee experiences throughout his connection to the organization, from the recruitment process to the end of his employment. As talent attraction and retention become increasingly difficult, companies should focus their efforts on perfecting EX. One of the biggest factors of EX is employee engagement. The two are intrinsically linked, with employee engagement emphasizing the importance of building an environment where everyone in the organization has the opportunity to succeed.
While there are a variety of employee engagement strategies floating around the internet, it’s important to note that it’s impossible for 1 model to translate to every company or employee. In fact, using a pre-existing strategy to shape employee engagement is a conceptual oxymoron. Annette Franz
, CEO of CX Journey Inc., agreed: “Employee engagement cannot be a strategy because engagement comes from within the employee. It’s the emotional connection or commitment that an employee has to the organization that then causes the employee to want to put forth the additional effort to ensure the organization and the brand succeed.”
That being said, there are 3 concepts that should shape an organization’s employee engagement strategy. 1. Be prepared
From their very first day, supply employees with tools for long-term success. Extensive training may seem tedious, but it sets the tone for the rest of their tenure. It’s just as important to develop employees throughout their employment. Development efforts can include additional education or relevant coaching to fine-tune priority skills. Don't forget to communicate appreciation for their hard work, and make sure they know they're valued. 2. Be receptive
Take the time to not only listen to employees but to consistently act on what they’ve shared with management. Annual employee surveys may provide enough information to be a jumping-off point, but frequent communication can be a faster alternative to address concerns. Active lines of communication foster healthier work relationships and long-term satisfaction. 3. Be flexible
The general consensus used to be that structure and routines reduce error while increasing efficiency. However, new research shows that employees who have flexible schedules and are given the choice to work remotely are more productive, happier, and more engaged.
Sticking to the traditional 8-to-5 schedule is a driving force behind the growing gig economy. Employees are leaving in-office jobs to be self-employed and create their own schedules. Combat this ahead of time by understanding that good employees require flexibility and provide it to them at any opportunity.
We throw around the term "employee engagement" all the time, but it's more than just a passing trend. Earning loyalty and dedication from employees will lead to a lower turnover rate, higher satisfaction, and greater financial success. These 3 strategies just scratched the surface, but they're a perfect starting point to start increasing engagement, and ultimately shaping the future of your team.