What is Employee Engagement?
Until today, the industry did not have a unified definition of employee engagement. William Kahn first proposed the concept of Employee Engagement in 1990:
‘The harnessing of organization member’ slaves to their work roles: in engagement, people employ and express themselves physically, cognitively, and emotionally during role performances.’
In 1993, Schmidt correlated job satisfaction with employee engagement, describing engagement as “an employee’s involvement with, commitment to, and satisfaction with work”.
However, even without a clear and unified definition, we can identify the core elements of engagement, such as full commitment and participation, extra effort, mutual commitment between organizations and individuals, job satisfaction, etc. Highly engaged employees interact well with the organization, colleagues, customers, and the work itself.
Today, most people don’t understand the difference between job satisfaction and job engagement. Job satisfaction is doing your individual commitment, your job and making yourself successful. Job engagement means doing your job above and beyond, making you and the company successful. Having a mutual commitment and having the company as a main priority is optimal.
In essence, employee engagement is about capturing your employee’s heads and their hearts.
Benefits of Employee Engagement
There are multiple benefits to having a higher rate of employee engagement. Highly engaged organization achieve:
1. Better team performance
Employee engagement not only benefits individual staff but also benefits the team. Think about it, when most of the members in your group are focused on their work all the time, the employee morale can be contagious. Therefore, when you are surrounded by driven and motivated peers who deeply care about what they do, you’re more likely to feel engaged in your own role.
When your employees engage with the organization, they are more likely to treat it as their own company. Which means they will provide more innovative ideas to add value to the company.
3. Higher retention
When employees can’t utilize their strength, feel challenged, or enjoy their work, they’re more likely to leave their current employer. Having more long-staying employees is suitable for your organization development. You will be able to save more time and money on training new staff.
4. Happier customers
Happy employees make customers happy. When your employees feel satisfied in their job, they will be more productive and positive. In order to increase employee’s satisfaction, don’t neglect training, and do it in the proper way.
However, although you invest so much energy and money to achieve ideal employee engagement, the terrible truth is only 15% of employees worldwide are engaged in their jobs (Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace report). There are three types of employees in any organization:
1. Engaged (15% of the workforce). These employees are loyal and emotionally committed to the organization. They are playing the role they are good at, and they can achieve the goal. They care and invest in the work and take on additional responsibilities. They may often become emerging leaders rather than dedicated employees. Time in the organization is accidental.
2. Not engaged (67% of the workforce). These employees can be challenging to identify because they are often relatively happy and satisfied in their position. However, they only do minimal work and do not invest in its mission, vision, values or goals. They are unlikely to be customer-centric, and they don’t care about productivity or company profitability. These team members are both a threat and an opportunity because they can be transformed into dedicated employees who thrive through the proper methods.
3. Actively disengaged (18% of the workforce). We have all worked alongside these people. Unfortunately, they are always the same, creating a bad environment, dominating their time, and bluntly expressing their unhappiness.
Here are some tips to improve your organization:
1. Invest in the selection and development of people who manage people. 14% of people leave their job because of their managers.
2. Show your employees you care because empathy is the only way to build trust.
3. Seek input and new ideas from your employees. It is essential to listen to what other people think of the organization and suggest their own opinions. This small action will make your employees feel that you care about them.
4. Build trust leadership. Itis crucial to building up a bonded relationship between leaders and employees. Having the same belief, let them know you’re building a castle is easier for them to understand the value of the work. Also, it will boost up employee’s motivation and enthusiasm for work.
So, can you identify
Who are your paddlers?
Who are your passengers?
And who’s sinking your boat now?