Maximizing employee engagement is something that comes with cascading benefits. Employee engagement is defined as an approach (by companies) to motivate their employees to stay committed to the goals of the organization and do their best while they are on the clock. One of the main reasons companies seek to improve engagement is because it is synonymous with higher productivity, but other benefits include reduced absenteeism, higher loyalty, reduced workplace injuries/incidents, and reduced turnover. Lastly, the benefits of employee engagement can be seen in the bottom line, especially with companies that rely heavily on customer service. Companies where the employees are perceived as highly engaged score way higher time and time again when it comes to customer service. This why engaged employees are better than unengaged employees and how to increase engagement.
Repetitive tasks or tasks that that are uniquely at odds with an employee’s personality are ones that will quickly lead to disengagement. When employees become disengaged don’t work as hard and they don’t take an interest in the goals of their team or the organization. From there a whole range of things can go wrong. So what are some factors that go into engagement? The logic goes that if you can increase or improve those factors then you can increase employee engagement.
Social cohesion is a big factor in how engaged an employee is with their team and organization. And this make intuitive sense doesn’t it? What employee would be engaged in a workplace filled with employees, including potentially their supervisor, that they either share nothing in common with or are actively at odds with? Social cohesion breeds trust, cooperation, respect, and more. When those things aren’t present, first the engagement of one employee goes down, and then it’s as if it’s contagious because it will reduce the engagement of the surrounding employees to a certain extent.
Empowerment also is a big factor in employee engagement. Employees who have the proper training, the adequate resources, and necessary approvals/permissions to do their help employees stay engaged and on task. When those things are missing, it reduces engagement, productivity, and morale.
Lastly, similar to one’s personal life, engagement increases as one has more “skin in the game.” Companies that have programs or compensation packages where employees are rewarded with (or can purchase at a discount) company stock or earn bonuses when the company reaches certain milestones are some ways that increase employee engagement. Positive recognition for such achievements also go a long way to reinforce employee engagement.