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5 Employee Engagement Strategies That Actually Work

12/03/20

Employee engagement and satisfaction is a leading factor in any company’s success and a recent study has shown that being an organisation with a highly engaged workforce is 21% more profitable than those without. With statistics like that it’s no wonder that 70% of employers have improved their physical environments to encourage healthy behaviors with their team members. However, 70% of workers are still not engaged in the companies they work for.  So how do you implement effective employee engagement strategies that will help lead you to success and increase loyalty? In this article, we have outlined the 5 most successful employee training and engagement strategies that will help boost profitability and employee retention.

What does employee engagement mean?

Employee engagement is defined as the emotional commitment the employee has to the company and its goals. What this means is that your employees don’t just simply come to work for a pay-check. They genuinely care, are passionate, determined to succeed within the business and are looking for opportunities in developing talent and making their own contributions. Engaging employees is vital for any organisational growth as it leads to higher productivity levels, higher customer satisfaction and increased product sales. But how do you keep staff motivated at work, stick to a budget and make a significant change? And how do you ensure that you are providing a healthy work environment where your employees feel safe, happy and secure in their jobs? Well, that’s where employee engagement best practices come into play….

What are employee engagement strategies and best practices?

Employee engagement best practices include leadership development, culture, performance and online training. Given the above information, you won’t be surprised to learn that best practices do not include money. Yes, a good remuneration package will go a long way to an extent. However, it is not everything. Professor William Kahn’s successful study in the ’90s proved that for employees to be engaged at work, the following 3 psychological conditions had to be met:

  • Meaningfulness – does their work make an impact on the company’s overall performance?
  • Safety – does the employee feel safe enough at work to be their full self?
  • Availability – does the employee feel mentally and physically able?

In other words, the employee engagement survey found that strategies should be focussed around making the employee feel like part of a community and employee development, not focussed around money.

8 Effective Employee Engagement Strategies to Lead you to Success

So keeping all the above in mind, let’s take a look at the 8 most effective employee engagement strategies to lead you to success.

1.     Provide opportunities for growth

employee engagement strategies 1 growth

One of the very best strategies for successful employee engagement is providing opportunities for development and growth. Millennials are now more career driven than ever with studies showing that 72% of them say they value opportunities for career development, compared to the 52 percent for boomers and 64% for Gen-X. Providing real growth opportunities will demonstrate your commitment to your employees and prove that recruiting and hiring internally and being able to ‘climb the ladder’ is achievable. Allowing your staff to increase their knowledge level and expertise will impact the worker’s self-esteem and make them feel more valued as a member of the team and will avoid disengagement. This in turn will lead to higher employee engagement, satisfaction and happiness.

What is a career development plan?

First off, you will need to show your employees they are being taken seriously when they say they are looking to develop their skills and progress in their careers. As a manager, you should be implementing career a development program, with achievable goals and if necessary KPI’s built in for your team. A successful career plan template should include 3 main sections; assessment, documentation and management.

  • Assessment – identify where your employee is right now. What are their responsibilities?, what have they already achieved?, what are their current qualifications, experience and strengths? You should also take this time to ask where they want to get to, what their goals are and what they would like to learn – once this has all been done you will start to have a clear picture of how your employee can progress within the company
  • Documentation – create an actual document on how the employee is to achieve their goals. Having a physical documentation will be easier to track and give the employee a clear time stamp of how long it will realistically take them to get to where they desire within their career
  • Management – as a manager you should be tracking how your employee is getting on. Hold regular one on one meetings to ensure your staff are happy with their progress, if they have any concerns or if their career path has changed at all

This is a fantastic employee engagement strategy that will lead both you and your employees to success!

2.     Recognise and reward top performers

employee engagement strategy 2 reward

Employees are engaged when they feel like they are actively recognised and rewarded for good work. Identifying that an employees work is valuable to the company’s overall performance will give them a sense of importance and appreciation. There is no one correct way in your approach to rewarding your employees. Take the time to find out what their hobbies and passions are. Are they a foodie and would appreciate restaurant vouchers? Do they enjoy day trips and experience days? Or maybe they just quite simply are a coffee enthusiast and a free Starbucks voucher will be greatly valued. Whatever the case, using resources and rewarding employees and recognising top performers is a great employee engagement strategy that is sure to improve employee retention.

Employee reward schemes as part of your engagement strategy

Lucky for you, there are fantastic employee reward schemes and platforms available that you can sign up to. These often offer a wide range of perks and discounts, meaning your staff can choose from a selection of rewards and pick the one that is most desirable to them. Here are our favourite reward platforms, guaranteed to enhance satisfaction within the work environment and make your employees stay happy:

  • Kazoo is a reward scheme platform that has a robust global catalog containing over 30,000 products, meaning that they have something for everyone. Other benefits include a live activity feed, peer-to-peer recognition, behavioral bonuses and excellent insights and reporting
  • Perkbox brings employee benefits, wellbeing, feedback and recognition together. When joining Perkbox your employees can get rewards such as weekly drinks from Caffe Nero, monthly cinema tickets, online fitness and wellness classes and even a Happy Birthday hamper!
  • Reward Gateway helps build employee engagement by delivering peer-to-peer and manager-led recognition features to reinforce core values, ways to measure progress through surveys and a range of employee discounts

Implementing a reward scheme platform is one of the top employee engagement strategies to ensure a happy workplace.

3.     Give opportunity for honest feedback

employee engagement strategies 3 feedback

Feedback should be a core value that all companies strive towards. Without feedback, then your company will never be able to drive to success as you won’t be able to identify key issues. You should always give your staff a regular opportunity to give HONEST feedback. It’s easy to send out a questionnaire that has been used over and over to employees once a year but unfortunately that won’t be enough information to make informed decisions on how the company’s core values could be improved. You have to ensure that employees feel a) comfortable enough around you to give honest feedback and b) you are asking the right questions. We have a great blog that lists 70 one-on-one meeting questions all managers should be asking their employees.  Research shows that companies who implement regular employee feedback have turnover rate that are 14.9% lower than for employees who receive no feedback, so this really is a fantastic employee engagement strategy to cause high retention.

Constructive feedback for the manager

As a manager, it is your job to make sure your employees are happy at work and they have all the tools they need to be productive. But knowing what questions to ask can be difficult. Have a one-on-one meeting primarily based on feedback so that this will be your key focus. A great way of receiving honest feedback is to also let your employees reply to questions anonymously. There are online platforms that will allow you to do this and employees will feel more at ease and comfortable to give negative feedback, that may well be very needed! After all, your employees are at work 8 hours a day, so they know the company flaws and stories better than anyone else.

4.    Respect your employees

employee engagement strategies 4 respect

Sounds simple, right? Mutual respect in the workplace is a vital engagement strategy. If you respect employees, then they will respect you back. If trust grows within the office, then so will collaboration. If your colleagues feel like you don’t respect them, then they will end up feeling demotivate, insulted and frustrated and ultimately quit their job. This doesn’t mean you have to always agree with your staff. If a disagreement does occur, then you can still show them an element of respect. You can question someone’s work; however, you should never question someone’s qualifications as this can be very insulting.

How to show respect in the workplace

If you’ve had a disagreement with someone in the office, or maybe you are trying to better promote teamwork for a healthier work culture, then these are some top tips on how to show respect in the workplace:

  • Never interrupt a co-worker. If they are trying to explain an issue/problem then sit and listen to their viewpoint
  • Be aware of body language and tone of voice. What you say may be perfectly acceptable but if it is being said with aggression or you are sat hunched over with your arms crossed then it may be interpreted as rude
  • Offer praise more frequently and encourage praise and recognition among employees

These tips sound so simple, yet they are extremely effective when putting together an employee engagement strategy plan.

5.     Employee effective group learning strategies

employee engagement strategy 5 team building

Training sessions are great for ensuring employees are up to date with industry knowledge and learning new techniques. However, be careful not to turn these into manager-led exercises. You should be planning out group learning sessions where your employees can be interactive. Get the whole team involved. Splitting your colleagues into smaller teams and giving them exercises is a great way to promote teamwork and competition in a healthy way. Be open to fun team building exercises and days out as it is important to get out the office with the team every now and then. You can read more on why you should have meetings outside the office here. Our team building and meeting venue in Staffordshire is the perfect location to host your offsite event. We have 25 acres of outdoor space to use for team building activities as well as 32 adaptable meetings rooms with all the latest technology for presentations.

Team building activities for employee engagement

There are lots of interactive and fun team building activities you can do that actually improve employee engagement and you should always be including these into your employee engagement strategies planning. Group activities are vital for employee bonding and you can incorporate your businesses core values into these games. Here are a few of our favourite group activities that we have seen being demonstrated at our venue:

  • Assassin – this is a common team building game. Each player picks another player as a target and tries to assassinate them. It is effective as it can improve the bond between your employees. It is the best game to relax and at the same time bring out each player competitive side
  • Minefield – Place items on the ground to represent mines. Gather your staff into teams of 4-5 and nominate a member to become blindfolded in the middle of the minefield. It is the rest of the team’s job to navigate the player through the field without stepping on any mines. This is ideal to build communication and trust within employees.

Effective group learning is a great employee engagement strategy that will leave your staff laughing for days!

Conclusion on employee engagement strategies

All in all, I think it has become pretty clear that implementing a successful employee engagement strategy is key for company growth. The 5 strategies above are a sure-fire way to lead you to success whilst maintaining employee satisfaction, happiness, health and a successful work life balance. Providing great ideas and a positive attitude to your people will help them feel less disengaged, guide them to make an actionable change and will empower them to feel happy in their day to day working life.

If you would like to book Yarnfield Park for an offsite meeting or activity day, then give us a call and we’ll be happy to share a discussion with you.

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