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Home » Blog » 10 Areas to Focus for Effective Employee Engagement 

“Intellectual capital” is treated as a business asset, just as much as any other tangible asset.

Investopedia confirms that, ‘Businesses can increase intellectual capital by hiring better employees, conducting training programs for employees, and developing new patents.’ It includes human capital as a critical component.

The human capital that can be retained with reduced employee turnover is key to building your organization’s intellectual capital. Employee turnover has taken a toll on various industries, as workers are found to be continuously switching jobs, resulting in high attrition rates. As a result, in these uncertain economic times, retaining and engaging employees has become a difficult challenge.

With dedication, loyalty, increased efficiency, and lower turnover among the benefits of getting engaged workers, it’s no wonder that employee engagement has become a top priority for many businesses.

Corporate industries’ sustainability depends on optimising income from established capabilities while acknowledging and adapting to the reality that what works today can not work tomorrow. Leaders of businesses work hard to involve workers in order to increase or sustain profitability (Kortmann, Gelhard, Zimmermann, & Piller, 2014). However, with global engagement levels at just 30%, businesses should examine what they can do to improve this figure.

Let us begin with an understanding of engagements on various grounds in the workplace.

Understanding The Levels of Employee Engagement

An active employee produces results, is less likely to switch jobs, and, most importantly, is a consistent representation of the company. A successful employee’s productivity, according to Hay Group, is “a result obtained by enhancing an employee’s enthusiasm for work and redirecting it toward organisational growth.” This result can be achieved only if an employer extends an implicit contract to employees who demonstrate specific positive behaviours that are aligned with the organization’s goals.

There are three degrees of commitment that an employee may be experiencing.

He could be engaged, not engaged, or disengaged.

  1. Engaged employees are those who work with passion towards the organization’s goals.
  2. An employee who is not engaged is one who is seen to be participating but not with passion and energy towards the organization’s common goal.
  3. Disengaged employees are those who are unhappy at their work and act out of their unhappiness.

Engagement is also found to have three different facets.

  1. Intellectual engagement refers to dedication towards performing better at one’s job.
  2. Active engagement or feeling positive are performing one’s job.
  3. Lastly social engagement is involved in discussions with others about enhancing work-related improvements.

10 Areas to Focus for Effective Employee Engagement

There is no one-size-fits-all solution, to be sure, but success can be achieved if one understands the significance of engagement and moves beyond defined rules.

In general it was found that people understand employee engagement as a state of mind, where one feels satisfied, empowered, and committed at work.

According to Macey and Schneider (2008), Employee engagement is a desirable condition. It has an organizational purpose and connotes involvement, commitment, passion, enthusiasm, focused effort, and energy, so it has both attitudinal and behavioral components.

According to the research paper Employee Engagement : Factors Affecting Employee Engagement, the topic has a wide range of factors. Here we will read about the 10 areas based on that paper.

1. Fertile Ground for Career Development

Organisations with highly engaged employees provide their employees with ample opportunities to learn skills, develop abilities, acquire knowledge and reach their potential. Career development practices help organisations retain talented employees and also provide personal development opportunities. Employees tend to invest in companies that invest in them by planning for their career development. Career development is a global factor in employee engagement. Also, the adequate level of employee development via training, skills, and learning can result in making employees more engaged with respect to the job and the organisation.

2. Effective Management of Talent

Employee engagement-friendly culture appreciates the diversity-related to talents and skills that come in with the employees and prompts the employees to aspire for and achieve the vision of the future. A talent management strategy consisting of career planning, organisational support, and incentives can result in high engagement and reduced attrition levels in the organisation.

3. Common Shared Company Values

Employees should be made to feel that their companies’ values are clear and unambiguous in order to generate higher engagement. Value fit amongst others was also found to be an antecedent to employee engagement.

Organizations cannot force shared values. Neither should they try to do so. What organizations can do instead is to create a culture that helps foster deep connections at work. To achieve shared values, organizations have to look for ways to build meaningful connections between employees and the company vision.

However, the company vision is a large, all-encompassing concept. To create a sense of shared values, this vision has to be tied to small, achievable goals for the employees to make it a part of the day-to-day experience. It is also essential to recognize the employees who accomplish these goals and help them stay motivated, committed, and accountable to this cause.

4. Empowerment

Employees believe they should be able to share their opinions on decisions that could have an impact on their employment. Highly engaged workplaces have leaders that create a challenging and trusting atmosphere in which workers are encouraged to challenge orthodox practices , innovate, and help the company develop.

Employees’ willingness to express their opinions to senior management has an effect on commitment. Employees feel inspired when they perceive their boss has an empowering personality, which offers inspiration and a sense of belonging to the organisation, resulting in increased engagement.

5. Establish Clear Communication

Good communication between the employer and employees, as well as among coworkers, is the foundation of long-term commitment. Employee decisions have a direct effect on their colleagues in today’s organisations, which have interconnected functional departments. This is particularly true when constant change becomes the standard. Organizations that assist workers in comprehending the significance of company values and ensuring that their behaviours are consistent with these values.

During the onboarding phase, a single session on company values is insufficient. It’s important not to put the whole responsibility of aligning with the value system on the employee’s shoulders. To drive common values across the company, it is critical to clearly communicate these values and how they are translated into day-to-day procedural operations. As a result, this is advised to be a constant process.

6. Build the Generation Bridge

The modern workforce, especially millennials and Generation Z, has distinct motives and expectations from their workplace. There is a strong emphasis on purpose. They’d like to know how they fit into the bigger picture. They want to know how their work has an impact. They want to know how much value the organisation adds to their lives.

Since they grew up in a technological community, millennials are technologically literate and very comfortable with the internet world. They are familiar with cell phones, laptop computers, real-time media, and communications (Shaw and Fairhurst, 2008).

This reduces their patience and instills in them an expectation of immediate input from their bosses, making it difficult to attract Millennials who have a clear desire for frequent work moves. They, too, have a deep desire to be guided by straightforward guidance and to be well served by their managers for similar reasons.

Organizations that communicate their corporate mission and values resonate with this workforce in order to have common values and vision. Determining where these differences in common beliefs are, it is needed to build bridges to fill those gaps. Organizations may gain relevant insights by defining problems related to common beliefs within the company and combining that knowledge with information relevant to the employees. We can only control what we can calculate, after all.

7. Leverage Coaching to Foster Vision

Coaching and mentorship are also essential for organisations that want to cultivate common values and vision. This is particularly true today, as there is a multi-generational workforce. Mentorship reveals the importance of mutual beliefs. It enables workers to see how their role fits into the bigger picture. It assists them in determining how they can match their career ambitions with organisational objectives. It also helps to reinforce meaningful relations around the company by positively influencing attitudes and behaviours.

8. Making Strong Connections

Shared values cannot be developed in a single day of training. Understanding shared values and developing strategies for incorporating them into daily activities fosters meaningful connections. Additionally, this results in stronger social connections at work. And research demonstrates how strong social connections and productivity are inextricably linked.

Employees who develop these connections and a sense of belonging with their coworkers are more likely to remain loyal to the organisation and dedicated to their work. Additionally, they will be more willing to exert discretionary effort because they understand the value of work. It resolves the conundrum of purpose, which millennials place a premium on. And by doing so, you contribute to workplace engagement and add credibility to the statement, ‘engaged employees are motivated by shared values and vision.’ Because, after all, engagement is an emotional commitment to an organization’s goals.

9. Ethical Organisational Conduct

Employee engagement is influenced by an organization’s ethical principles. Employees’ readiness to endorse the company’s services and products is determined by their understanding of the quality of the services and goods. Increased employee engagement is related to increased customer engagement. Employee engagement levels are reflected in the corporate reputation as viewed by the employees.

10. Pay, Benefits and Appraisals

Another critical criteria for determining an employee’s level of engagement is a fair evaluation of the employee’s results. Employee participation is higher in organisations that use an effective assessment technique that is proven to be unbiased and clear.

Egalitarian compensation systems have an effect on employee engagement. As opposed to components like base pay and benefits, incentives, intangible rewards, and the quality of leadership have a stronger relationship with the organization’s ability to generate highly satisfied workers. An employee’s awareness of the compensation policies, services, and processes in place contributes to a higher degree of commitment.

Building a better organization with engaged employees

Employee engagement is a highly targeted activity in the new world of work. Rather than viewing employee engagement as a whole, it makes sense to examine the individual pieces that make up this picture.

Employee engagement is for all employees, including remote workers, part-time workers, contractual workers, and frontline workers. Whether they work from a physical location or a virtual one, it is critical to keep them engaged regardless of when or where they work.

We need to acknowledge that engaging employees is not rocket science. Also, there is no magic potion or magic spell. It is a craft built on trust, and trust breeds loyalty. Clearly, employee engagement is a journey, not a destination. Shared ideals and a shared vision are the tools that make this path infinitely easier to navigate.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the definition of employee engagement?

 Employee engagement is defined as an employee’s level of motivation, enthusiasm, and investment in their work and the organisation they work for.

What are the top ten areas to concentrate on for effective employee engagement?

 Ten areas to concentrate on for effective employee engagement are: 

  1. Fertile Ground for Career Development
  2. Effective Management of Talent
  3. Common Shared Company Values
  4. Empowerment
  5. Establish Clear Communication
  6. Build the Generation Bridge
  7. Leverage Coaching to Foster Vision
  8. Making Strong Connections
  9. Ethical Organisational Conduct
  10. Pay, Benefits and Appraisals

What are the levels of employee engagement?

Employee engagement is divided into three categories: engaged, not engaged, and actively disengaged.

How can one build a better organization with engaged employees?

 In the new world of work, engaged employee engagement is a highly focused activity. Rather than looking at employee engagement as a whole, it’s better to look at the different components that make it up.

What does it mean to have engaged employees?

Employees who are engaged are individuals who are involved with, passionate about, and committed to their job and company.