Want high employee engagement? Then make every day Employee Engagement Day (not just before survey time….).
I often get asked by various CEO’s or HR Executives to help them interpret their latest Employee Engagement Survey results. I will ask if the results were worse than they expected? They will often say something along the lines of: “Yes, they were. And the managers worked so hard leading up to the survey launch. We really thought we would get better results this time.”
This then prompts me to ask some more questions, that I already know the answer to. Such as:
“Are participation numbers in the Employee Engagement Survey part of management’s performance bonus program?” The answer will be, “Yes.”
“Did the management team have a big kick-off session prior to the launch of the survey and promise the team at large that their opinions matter and that the results will form an action plan for positive change?” Again… “Yes.”
And, my favorite one… “Did the results show that the employees viewed ‘communications from leadership, understanding strategy and my manager cares about me’ has poor or even worse than the previous year?” And again… “Yes.” This time though, the CEO on the other side of the table looks at me as if I am some sort of mind reader.
First, I am not a mind reader. If I were, I would not get blindsided as often as I do when my wife changes the rules without notice…. But that’s a blog for another day.
Employee Engagement is not a once a year thing that lasts for the six weeks prior to a survey being launched. It is an everyday event. It is like brushing your teeth. Every day of the year, team members need to know where the organization is going, why and how it affects them. Then they need to know how they are doing as an individual contributor. Every day!
1. Stop making employee engagement survey rates part of management’s bonus plan. It encourages behavior that is superficial and transparent.
2. Every day, get in the habit of connecting one-on-one with your team members. Face-to-face or on the phone. It doesn’t have to be a scheduled event. Walking around and stopping by each person’s work area for a few minutes is all it takes. On the phone, first thing or at the end of the day and simply asking them “How is it going?” is all it takes.
3. On a regular basis, make sure your team members know:
Believe me, every day is employee engagement day. It is more important that the pile of new emails you have or the bullshit report you must write (that no one reads anyway).
Robert Murray is a Vancouver, BC based Business Strategy Consultant, partner at Incrementa Consulting Inc., #1 Best Selling Author, and International Keynote Speaker. For further advice, insight and inspiration on how to unlock your inner leader, follow Robert on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
The audio version of Bob’s #1 best seller It’s Already Inside is now available on Audible.Business, Employee Engagement, Employee Retention, It's Already Inside, Leader, Leadership, Robert Murray, Robert S. Murray, Team, Team Work