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Six Keys to Improving Employee Engagement

Nothing is accomplished without effort. Not in art, not in athletics, and certainly not in business. That’s why employee engagement is so important.

This becomes especially true as companies grow larger and begin to scale. If one employee out of ten is only partially engaged, that’s little more than a fact of life. But if 100 employees, or 1000 employees, or more are only partially engaged, that represents an enormous loss of productivity, revenue, and a massive risk of rapid employee turnover.

In fact, according to Louis Greenstein at Wharton Magazine, a recent Gallup survey revealed that only 30 percent of employees in the United States report being “actively engaged” at work, an annual loss of productivity estimated to total more than $550 billion.

That’s why Wharton professor Nancy Rothbard has developed her six keys to improving employee engagement.

Managers, you may want to take note.

The Emotion Effect

That human beings are emotional creatures is an inescapable fact of life. Employees bring their baggage from their home lives to work. That’s why it’s so crucial to institute HR and company policies that encourage healthful, positive lifestyles. That positivity and health carries over into work, and it will make your business healthier and more positive, too.

Disconnection Crisis

Many managers make the mistake of merely assuming that employees are engaged in their work. This disconnect between managers and their employees leads to false assumptions about engagement; according to the aforementioned Gallup survey, fully 70% of employees aren’t engaged. What’s worse, many managers don’t even realize it due to communication breakdowns and lack of feedback loops.

Engagement is Everything

Managers need to value engagement more highly, and make ensuring it one of their business’ core competencies. Better employee engagement means more productivity, better performance, and lower employee turnover. These are real, tangible value-adds.

Technology: Tool and Distraction

While technology can certainly be a tool to boost productivity and keep employees satisfied, it can also be the world’s most attractive nuisance, a portal to social media, personal emails, games, and more. Managers should be sure to not only provide technology, but monitor its use, as well.

Strength in Numbers

Human beings are social animals; we like to work in groups. According to the Gallup survey, when managers employed a group or team to complete a task, they were successful 89 percent of the time. Get more out of everyone by enlisting more than one.

Value in Visuals

The majority of people are visual learners (60%). Studies show that employees are more actively engaged in a task when they have visual aids and cues to anchor their focus. Whether a whiteboard or a computer screen, managers should work to capture their employees’ attention visually, as well.

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Achieve better employee engagement, realize more revenue, have happier employees. It’s that simple, and that powerful!

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