The Importance of Employee Engagement
Employees who feel connected to their organization work harder, stay longer and motivate others to do the same.
Employee engagement affects just about every important aspect of an organization, including profitability, revenue, customer experience, employee turnover and more.
It is defined as the strength of the mental and emotional connection employees feel toward the work they do, their teams and their organization.
Employee engagement does not mean:
Employee engagement is the emotional commitment the employee has to the organization and its goals. This emotional commitment means engaged employees actually care about their work and their organization. They don’t work just for a pay cheque, or just for the next promotion, but work on behalf of and towards the organization’s goals.
When employees care, when they are engaged, they use discretionary effort. This means that they will go the extra mile, work overtime without being asked, resolve issues even when ‘it’s not within their job description’ per se.
While disengaged employees have a negative opinion of their place of work, are disconnected from the mission, goals and future of the organization. They lack commitment to their position and responsibilities.
On the other end of the spectrum, when employees feel connected to their teams, love their jobs and have positive feelings about the organization, they’re going to want to stay and put in extra effort to help the organization succeed. These employees become “brand advocates” and they encourage other employees around them to do their best.
Employee engagement leads to:
Therefore, engaged employees lead to:
Who drives employee engagement?
Every person in an organization impacts employee engagement, as this will relate to the quality of relationships they build, their approach to teamwork and general attitudes they bring to the workplace.
Leadership, especially inspiring leadership and team relationships, are extremely important for engagement. This is because employees want to work for leaders and teams that put people first, that value employee contributions and show integrity.
The leaders of an organization are the employee engagement advocates, they influence the culture in an organization, through setting the tone, setting the vision and communicating it throughout the organization.
Employees want to work for organizations that have a strategy built for success. They want to believe that they can contribute to that success in their role. Individuals want to successfully contribute to winning teams and organizations.
The support provided to employees, or the lack thereof, will impact employee engagement. Employees cannot be expected to be engaged if:
However, employee engagement is not a one-way stream, employees also need to play their part in the overall organizational employee engagement process. Employees need to:
While employee engagement does not happen overnight, nor does it occur at the click of a button, the effort that an organization puts in place for employee engagement is well worth it and will reap tangible benefits for the organization.
There is a case to be made for having highly engaged employees in an organization.
Employee engagement is a win-win for both employees and organizations at large and is a worthwhile investment.