As a HR Manager, Employee Engagement along with handling day to day Employee grievance was a key challenge. We preach and preach about pro-active employee engagement at companies but how many employers are able to achieve that? In reality Employees only come to the HR Department when things have hit the roof. It becomes difficult because by then they have zero tolerance and patience left. They are unwilling to discuss any issues that they may have been facing at work.
It is almost always easier to tackle issues when the employee has not become frustrated and disengaged. A disengaged employee may take back a resignation upon sudden offer of increments/bonuses etc. or promises of a better tomorrow. But sooner or later, they leave. Its irreversible damage and its better eventually for the employer to let go of a disengaged employee because he/she resonates negativity about the workplace and hampers any positivity around him/her in their respective teams.
The realization of how/when each exit happened and reaching its rootcause is very important for every HR team and organization. Each resource that leaves is a bad debt that a company will bear. Vacancies can be filled. Technical skills can be replicated. But a successful positive resource is something that cannot be replaced. People bring personality, charisma, positivity and creativity to the workplace if they are engaged. Without Employee engagement they do the work but add nothing extra to its overall performance.
These are some tips for ensuring an engaged and successful team at the workplace:
Knowing your employees.
This can mean so many things and can be done in so many ways. For instance, sending out a birthday email to your employees. Congratulating them on their work anniversaries, wedding anniversaries, birth of a child- anything personal. This makes the employee feel valued and that the company took notice of such personal accomplishments in his life. Little things like Managers that know their team members by name, Meeting team members every morning with a Good Morning – are things that make an employee comfortable and eventually emotionally attached to the organization.
Appreciating talent and wins.
Such a simple and redundant tip. However still the most ignored. Managers who appreciate even the smallest of triumphs of their teams – have the best retentions in their departments. Sending out emails to appreciate employees with their teams’ cc-ed/management cc-ed etc. Performance awards for employees who do well in teams, or to teams who do well on projects together are extremely important and almost a necessity now. Finding new ways to identify talent in the organization and constantly remind them that they are brilliant is the best way of keeping good talent engaged.
Consistent, Continuous and Interactive Communication.
Your communication strategy for stakeholders within the company and outside the company is instrumental in ensuring that you have an engaged workforce. The more you communicate positive news to people within your organization, the stronger their bond with the company. The word of mouth portrays the company as an Employer of Choice. The more you communicate positive news to people outside the organization, the more pride your employees feel about being a part of your team. Finding new ways of interacting with employees on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis without getting overbearing is the true challenge HR and Marketing teams face today. What to communicate, how to communicate and then how to reiterate are items that should be on your agenda. And all the management, people involved in PR, Marketing, Branding, Human Resources, and anyone dealing with people should be aware of this agenda.
Honest, Rational and Measurable Feedback on Performance.
It is imperative to have a healthy performance feedback system available for a better Employee Engagement in the Organization. Telling people when they go wrong is not enough. Telling people how they can improve what they did wrong is better. That is the only way you can positively drive people. Shaming someone on their failure would never let them improve and see the positivity about working for a team. However helping them cope up with pressure and challenges will ultimately lead to having a wining team onboard that doesn’t give up, is ready to learn and reinvent themselves. They become fearless because they know with every challenge will come improvement and eventually more success.
A Healthy Exit Management System.
If there has to be an exit, then it should be a clean, quick and stress free one. Letting an employee go without holding a grudge against them. Wishing Ex- Employees the best for their future endeavours, both are tough things to do for most organizations. However, what they do not realize that these ex-employees could someday become future clients. Ex-employees can still speak positively about the company even after they leave.