A recent study by Gallup showed that only 35 percent of U.S. employees feel engaged at work – a number that dropped to 15 percent at the global level. This is astronomically lower than what it should be. Employee engagement is critical because it is linked not only to the overall quality of work, but to individual satisfaction, and in turn, loyalty and commitment to the company.
When it comes to building company loyalty, it is important to remember that healthier employees are happier employees. An engaged team member is someone who feels seen, heard and taken care of, which increases their commitment to their employer. Additionally, engaged employees are more productive, meeting bottom-line objectives faster and with superior quality. Companies can see the difference in their work, as they excel at delivering on the company’s mission and values.
To feel engaged, people need to derive real meaning and purpose from their work, be aligned with company values and have a sense of connection. Their skills and expertise must be used to their full extent in ways that contribute to the greater good of the company. But in a world where remote working has become the norm, ensuring employee engagement takes extra effort and attention. Here are three key ways to improve employee engagement.
- Set clear expectations. The first step is ensuring that adequate expectations are set with each team member for what they will produce in their role, and understanding each person’s strengths. By keeping the lines of communication open, companies can encourage a dialogue, where a clear understanding of what is needed, along with consistent feedback will help employees feel supported. These conversations build mutual trust and respect, creating an environment where realistic expectations are communicated and no employees are left without help or feel set up for failure. Cultivating an environment where clarity and transparency are among your organization’s core values will undoubtedly help teams thrive.
- Provide necessary resources. Companies must ensure each team member has the tools, training and resources they need to get their job done and get it done exceptionally well. While working remotely, this may include additional technology to replicate the in-person experience, as well as virtual training, team building and new tools. More than anything else, it is absolutely vital to prioritize mental, emotional, physical and social health, the four core pillars of well-being. No one can pour from an empty cup, so giving people the time they need to recharge is essential, along with providing resources they can easily access, and encouraging them to allocate time to self-care. This allows them to approach their workday fully invested, rather than burn out or be distracted by lingering issues. To support our clients’ employees, AccessElite offers a variety of restorative classes including yoga, tai chi, meditation, mental health and personal development.
- Create personal connections. As a leader, checking in with your team daily and actively building rapport is more important than ever, particularly in a remote work setting. With the necessary tools for success in place, communication and connection being key, each individual and team will feel supported and able to achieve their professional goals. During check-in meetings, focus on asking and understanding each employee’s needs, then provide both tailored solutions and tools, as well as the opportunities to shine. Meaningful connections with employees can go a long way, especially during a difficult time. Personal issues often affect people’s workplace performance, so giving grace where needed and lending an ear or hand where possible is an important part of creating connections. If an employee is completely overwhelmed, it is crucial to give them some leeway and time to focus on what matters most, understanding that during difficult times, team members might not perform at full capacity. Once their total well-being is restored, engagement and productivity will follow.
At AccessElite, these three steps are the basic building blocks of employee engagement as we work to re-humanize the corporate setting. 2020 taught us a lot, but the most significant lesson we learned was the increased need for respecting employees’ humanity.
If you are looking for guidance and tools to improve employee engagement, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how AccessElite can help!