There’s no getting around it: The absolute best way to boost employee engagement is to go directly to the source. Through routinely surveying an employee base – and actually listening to and acting upon their responses – any company can improve morale, happiness, and overall retention. However, here are a few “cheat sheet” ways to boost employee engagement, in addition to regularly surveying your employee base:
- Work from the Top → Down: As is shown in the below chart published by Forbes, leadership effectiveness has one of the most direct and substantial influences on employee engagement of direct reports. As Gallup suggests, “Select the right managers. Whether hiring from the outside or promoting from within, organizations that scientifically select managers for the unique talents it takes to effectively manage people greatly increase the odds of engaging their employees.”
- Show Recognition: Whether displayed as an ongoing effort (such as a “thank you” email or congratulatory sticky note) or through acknowledging above-and-beyond performance (such as through offering a tangible reward or making a company-wide announcement), recognizing employees for good work has also been shown to be closely correlated with employee engagement. In fact, in a 2013 study by Cicero, employees who reported receiving “strong recognition” boasted an employee engagement rate of 79% – well above the national average and of those receiving “weak recognition” (25%).
- Provide Career Development: The ability for a worker to see an opportunity for advancement and promotion is crucial to engagement within their current roles – particularly when it comes to the Millennial generation entering the work force. Knowing the steps to advancement and receiving feedback on following that path have been strongly correlated with employee engagement.